Fe is an Open Secret
THE THIRTEENTH SAYING
JESUS SAID: IF THOSE WHO LEAD YOU SAY TO YOU, 'SEE, THE KINGDOM IS IN HEAVEN,'
THEN THE BIRDS OF HEAVEN WILL PRECEDE YOU.
IF THEY SAY TO YOU, 'IT IS IN THE SEA,' THEN THE FISH WILL PRECEDE YOU.
BUT THE KINGDOM IS WITHIN YOU AND IT IS WITHOUT YOU.
IF YOU WILL KNOW YOURSELVES, THEN YOU WILL BE KNOWN AND YOU WILL KNOW THAT YOU ARE THE SONS OF THE LIVING FATHER.
BUT IF YOU DO NOT KNOW YOURSELVES, THEN YOU ARE IN POVERTY AND YOU ARE POVERTY.
The kingdom of God has been preached as if it is always somewhere else: in time, in space, but always somewhere else - not here and now. Why has this happened? Why is the kingdom of God not here and now? Why in the future, or why somewhere else?
It is because of the human mind. The human mind disappears in the present. It lives in the future, in the hope, in the promise of the future; it moves through desire. Desire needs time, desire cannot exist if there is no time. If suddenly you come to a moment where you realize that time has disappeared, that now there is no time, no tomorrow, what will happen to your desire? It cannot move, it disappears with time.
Basically time is not a physical phenomenon, it is psychological. Time is not there outside you, it is the very functioning of your mind that creates time. A Jesus lives without time; you live in time.
Hence, all the buddhas - Jesus is a buddha, an enlightened person - have been emphasizing, "Be desireless! Then suddenly the gates of heaven are open for you." But to be desireless you have to be here and now, because then there is no bridge to move into the future, to move anywhere; then there is no bridge. Desire is the bridge.
Mind needs time, mind cannot exist without time. The more time you have, the more ground mind has to play, to fool around. Then it can make many, many desires and dreams, and live in those desires and dreams. Priests have always been talking as if heaven is in the future, because only the future can be understood by the mind, and only because of that future can you be exploited - and you also feel at ease.
I have heard that in one church the minister was praising the kingdom of God and he said, "There are streets of gold and fields of emeralds!" And he praised as much as he could and then he asked, invited, "Who would like to go there?" All the hands were raised except one old man's. The minister couldn't believe it. Why has this old man not raised his hand? He should be the first, because he is just nearing death. Then he condemned and painted a picture of hell, with all its ugliness, torture, pain, suffering, fire. Again he challenged, "Now, who would like to go to the kingdom of God, to heaven?" All hands were raised - but that old man was still sitting without raising his hand. The minister was puzzled. He asked that old man, "Don't you hear me? Are you deaf? Would you not like to go to the kingdom of God, to heaven?"
The man said, "Eventually, yes. But the way you are carrying on, it seems you want to carry a load off right now. Eventually yes, but right now, no!"
If you are told, "The kingdom of God is here and now," you are not ready. Many are the desires to be fulfilled before you can leave; many, many things have to be done before you would think of entering the kingdom of God. You are still dreaming and not ready to be awake, you need time. The priest appeals to you - but not a Buddha, not a Jesus, because Jesus talks in terms of no-time: he makes an uneasy friend. To live with Jesus is to live in constant discomfort. He doesn't allow you the convenience of dreaming, he doesn't allow you time, future - he says that there is no tomorrow.
Tomorrow helps in another way: as you are right now, you don't accept yourself, you know you are not worthy. You know that, as you are, even you yourself cannot accept yourself. How is God going to accept you? No, it is impossible! You cannot conceive of it. You have condemned yourself so much, you are so guilty, that how will God accept you? It is impossible. Right now, if the kingdom opens, if the door invites you, you will not be able to have that much courage to enter. You need a little time to transform yourself, you need a little time to be good, you need a little time to be a saintly man. You need a little time to do many things so that your being becomes acceptable, so that even God can love you. There are many desires - they need time. And many 'shoulds' are waiting - they need time.
The whole morality of the world - forms differ, but the essential base is the same - has been condemning you: you are wrong, something has to be done; you have to be put right, you have to be polished, you have to be made worthy. So if somebody says, "The door is open right now," you feel uncomfortable. Then you cannot enter. But if he says, "It is in the future," then there is time enough. You are at ease, you can work it out, you will polish yourself. You can create an image, an ideal, and you will follow that ideal so some day or other you will become a saint. And this is the trick of the mind: if you can postpone, the mind remains the same; to remain the same, the mind wants to postpone. Not to change, ideals are needed; not to take the jump, time is needed so that you can postpone.
Postponing is the base of your continuity as you are. If this house is on fire you will not postpone, you will simply jump out. You will not even ask, "Where is the door? Where are the steps? From where to go?" You will not seek a teacher, a guide - you will simply jump out. Anywhere will be the door! Wherever you are, from there the journey starts out. And you will not say, "Am I really worthy to be saved? Am I worthwhile?" No, all these questions will not arise.
Philosophy is for luxurious moments when you can ask questions and get answers and go on postponing. But when there is danger you put aside all philosophy. Have you observed, whenever you are in danger you put aside your mind? You don't think at all, there is not enough time to think - the house is on fire, you jump! And when you are out, then you can sit under a tree and think again about what has happened. But in the moment when danger is there, when death is there, time is no more. You simply have to act, there is no gap to think; you have to act, only action can save you.
Time is postponement, and you would like to postpone for millions of reasons. One is: many things are yet unfulfilled - you have not tasted this world. You have been in this world millions of times, you have tasted it in millions of ways, but still the hunger remains, the thirst is there. Not because there was not enough time... for the whole past you have been here - and the whole past means eternity, it is beginningless - since eternity you have been here, acting in millions of ways, fulfilling millions of desires, and yet you are still hungry and thirsty. You think more time is needed? You have had already more than enough! Not more time, but understanding, awareness is needed that the very nature of desire is to remain unfulfilled.
However much time is given, even many eternities, the desire will remain unfulfilled. It is the very nature of desire that it remains unfulfilled. It will arise again and again, and the more you try to fulfill it, the more it will arise; you are simply feeding the desire when you think you are fulfilling it. You move into sex, you think you are fulfilling it - you are simply feeding the desire. Tomorrow it will come back even more greedy, even more full of lust, with even more expectations. You feed it again, tomorrow it will knock at your door again with more madness, with more hope - and every day it will grow. And as you experience it, you feel more and more hungry. You are feeding it, the fulfillment is not there.
And this is so with every desire. Look at ordinary desires, very ordinary ones: you take food, the hunger disappears, but it disappears only to come back again. Can hunger disappear forever through food? Is there any possibility that, just by taking food, hunger will disappear forever? You are thirsty, you drink water - do you think the thirst is going to disappear forever? No, that is not the nature of desire. And these are ordinary desires that you can understand. They are repetitive, and the more you repeat, the more you are hypnotized, because repetition is hypnosis: you did it yesterday, you are doing it today, you are hoping to do it tomorrow; you are repeating the desire.
And the more you repeat it, the more you get into it.
You have desired in many ways for millions of lives, and you are born in that particular way that you desire. And you fulfill it: a man who wants to have sex like a dog will be born like a dog; a man who is greedy like a pig will be born like a pig, so that he can fulfill his desire. You have been born in every possible way, because you have existed for eternity - like a tree, like a bird, like an animal.... This is what Hindus call yonis. They say you have been born through millions of wombs, your desire has taken many forms, and you have tried through every possible dimension. Nothing has happened up to now, nothing is ever going to happen, because the very nature of desire is to remain unfulfilled. If you understand this then the future is not needed - then you can remain here and now. And when the future drops, desire drops.
Try to understand from another direction: you have tried in every way to transform yourself - you don't remember your past lives, but you know this life - you have done everything to transform yourself. Are you even a little bit transformed? Even a little bit, I say? Are you even a little bit transformed? Or do you simply remain the old - a little polished here, a little polished there, a little modified here or there - but is there really any change? Has any mutation happened to you? And if it has not happened up to now, what reason is there to think it is going to happen in the future?
And if you go on living the same way you have lived, postponing, then it is never going to happen, because postponing is a trick of the mind not to allow transformation to happen.
This is the deepest trick, and one has to understand it. Why do you postpone for tomorrow? - because you don't want to do it now, right now. You play a logical game: you say, "Right now it is difficult, but tomorrow it will be simple." But every tomorrow comes as today, and when tomorrow comes again it will be today and you will say, "Right now it is difficult, but tomorrow I will do it!" This is the way of the mind to feel at ease - and tomorrow never comes.
Postponing is not the way of transformation. Up to now you have been postponing - been postponing again and again. Each moment you have been postponing - and that's why you have remained the same. If you understand this, transformation is this moment... because it needs no effort, it is an awakening. It is not a question of modification, it is not a question of doing something with your self.
As you are, you are perfect; as you are, you are divine; as you are, you lack nothing at all - simply awakening is needed. Just come out of your dreaming and your sleep, just open your eyes and see the fact, and the fact transforms: suddenly, you are no longer the past.
When you drop the future, the past is dropped immediately. This is one of the fundamental laws of life: if you can drop the future, the past drops immediately because it cannot remain there. It is just like making a bridge on a river. The bridge needs two banks to exist. If one bank disappears, the other bank alone cannot support the bridge - the bridge falls, everything disappears. The past and the future are the two banks, and between these two you have made a bridge of desire. You are always going somewhere, always going somewhere. If you are not reaching, then the mind says, "Move fast!"
This is why the whole modern trend is for speed. The mind says, "You are not reaching because your speed is not great enough. The goal is just there, you can see it is attainable tomorrow, or the day after tomorrow at the most; the goal is there, you can see it on the horizon. Your speed is not great enough - move fast, run! Create new mechanisms to help speed and you will reach."
We have reached the moon because of this logic - and we have not achieved any goal. Speed goes on becoming faster and faster and faster; sooner or later we will be moving with the speed of light, right now we are moving with the speed of sound. The more speed, the more lost you will be, because then it will be very difficult to come back home. Right now, you cannot go very far away; the more speed, the more difficult to come home.
This is why self-knowledge has become almost impossible in this age, the age of speed. Buddha realized himself easily, Jesus realized himself easily, because they lived in the age of no speed - they simply walked. The bullock cart was the fastest thing possible, and you can walk faster than a bullock cart. They walked on the earth, we are flying in the skies, we have penetrated space, and the faster we move the more difficult it becomes to come back home.
I have heard, once it happened: Two beggars found a motorcycle on the street - somebody had forgotten to take the key with him. The motorcycle was there with a sidecar, so one tramp jumped on the motorcycle, the other in the sidecar, and they sped away bound for the next town.
After fifteen minutes the man who was driving looked at his friend. The friend's face was absolutely red, as if he had gone mad, or as if he were dying. He asked, "What is the matter?"
The other said, "Slow down a little, because this thing has no bottom, and I have been running all the way!"
This thing desire has no bottom. You are dying because you have been running all the way, and faster and faster and faster, and this thing has no bottom. Desire has no bottom, that's why it cannot be fulfilled. If you try to fill a pot with water and it has no bottom, when will you be able to fill it? It is impossible. Why are you not able to fill this bottomless pot of desire? You have never looked to see whether it has a bottom or not - you simply jumped. And you have been running so fast that there is no gap to stop and have a look to see what is happening.
All the priests exploited this. But Jesus is not a priest - you cannot find a man more anti-priest than Jesus. A real religious man is never a priest, he cannot be, because the priest is exploiting your weaknesses. A real religious man, a master, wants to make you stronger. And a priest is just a cunning man who knows what your weakness is. The weakness is to look to the future, to postpone:
somewhere, eventually, you will enter into the kingdom of God - but not right now. Many other more important things have to be done, many more important desires have to be fulfilled. God is always the last item on your list, and the list is infinite. He is not going to get any chance. He is the last item.
Now look at these words of Jesus.
IF THOSE WHO LEAD YOU SAY TO YOU, 'SEE, THE KINGDOM IS IN HEAVEN'
... not here, somewhere high in the skies, somewhere far away; the kingdom of God is somewhere distant, very far away - THEN THE BIRDS OF HEAVEN WILL PRECEDE YOU. They will reach before you, then you will be at a loss. Jesus is joking, he is saying: Then don't hope, because the birds of heaven will reach before you!
IF THEY SAY TO YOU, 'IT IS IN THE SEA,' THEN THE FISH WILL PRECEDE YOU ... and they will reach before you, you will miss.
About whom is Jesus talking? He is talking about the priests. The priests are the enemies of religion, but they have become the managers. They manage everywhere, and then they don't allow a Jesus-like person to enter their temples.
There is a beautiful story in Dostoevsky's Brothers Karamazov. After eighteen hundred years Jesus thought, "Now I must go and visit the earth again, because after eighteen hundred years of Christianity, now the earth may be ready to receive me. Now, they will not reject me as they did before, because when I went there before there was not a single Christian, I was a stranger. Now, half the earth is Christian; millions of churches and priests continuously preaching Jesus' word. Now I am going to be received, welcomed; all the doors will be open to me. Now is the time. I should not have gone before - that was not the right time."
He came again, of course on a Sunday morning, because it is difficult to find who is a Christian or not if you come on other weekdays. It is impossible, everybody is the same! Only on Sunday can you distinguish who is a Christian, because religion is a Sunday affair. It is not concerned with life, it is just a ritual to be done, a formality to be fulfilled - without any heart in it. And he reached his village, where he had come eighteen hundred years before: Bethlehem. He stood in the marketplace, a little apprehensive because people looked at him and nobody recognized him, and they were coming in and going out of the church. And then a few people gathered around him and they started telling him, "You look just like Jesus - you have done a good act, you are a good actor!"
Jesus said, "I am not an actor. I am the real Jesus."
So they started laughing and they said, "If you are the real Jesus, then escape before the priest comes out; otherwise you are bound to get into trouble." Then small urchins started throwing stones and people started laughing: "The real Jesus has come, the king of the Jews! This is the man they crucified - he is resurrected!" And they were joking and laughing.
And Jesus felt very much... because these were his people, they were no longer Jews. They were Christians; they followed him, and even they could not recognize him. But he waited, hoping, "At least my priest will recognize me. These may be foolish people, ignorant - but my priest knows."
And then came the priest. People stopped laughing, just out of respect for the priest. They made way for him, the crowd allowed him to go in, they bowed down in deep respect. Jesus laughed in his heart: "They have not bowed down to me, they have not given me any respect, but they respect the priest. At least that is a good sign, because he is my priest. Through him they will recognize me.
They recognize me through him, not directly, because they are blind and they cannot see."
And then the priest looked at him and said, "Come down, you ruffian! What do you think you are doing, insulting our God?"
Jesus said, "Can't you recognize me?"
The priest collared him and said, "I recognize you well. Come and follow me." He took him into the church and locked him into a cell. Jesus was very puzzled: "What is going to happen? Are my own people going to crucify me again?"
And then in the night the priest came with a small candle in his hand and unlocked the door. He locked the door from the inside, bowed down, touched Jesus' feet and said, "I recognize you well! But not in the marketplace, not before the worshippers, because you are an old troublemaker. Somehow we have managed everything well, but you will disturb things. Now everything is smooth, Christianity is established: we have converted half the earth, sooner or later the other half will be converted. You just wait there, you need not come here! You could not convert a single man when you were here and we are doing so well, we have managed so well; you should be thankful to us.
"And we can recognize you when there is nobody, but we cannot recognize you before others because you are anti-priest, anti-church, you are anti-establishment. And if you insist, then we will have to crucify you again. We can worship you when you are not present because that doesn't disturb anybody. Everything is smooth, moving well - look how we have managed! Half the earth converted, millions of churches and priests preaching your word. You should be satisfied. So escape immediately from here, and don't come again. We are the agents here and whatsoever you want to do, you can do it through us. You cannot be allowed to move among the masses directly. You are dangerous!"
This priest is stating one of the basic truths: that the priest cannot be religious. He may be a priest of Buddha but he is against Buddha. He works for him, or appears to; he quotes his words, or appears to. But if Buddha comes he will stand between you and the Buddha and won't allow you in, because a Buddha, a Jesus, is always rebellious, he is never conformist. He can create a revolution, he cannot create an establishment.
WHEN JESUS SAYS: IF THOSE WHO LEAD YOU SAY TO YOU - he is indicating towards the priests - 'SEE, THE KINGDOM IS IN HEAVEN,' THEN THE BIRDS OF HEAVEN WILL PRECEDE YOU. IF THEY SAY TO YOU, 'IT IS IN THE SEA,' THEN THE FISH WILL PRECEDE YOU.
And the priests always say it is somewhere else.
It happened in India... because India is the oldest land of the priests. Nowhere has such a priesthood come into existence as in India - it became a caste, brahmins, they are the priests. They secluded themselves totally from the society, they made everything secret, their language was not allowed to be known by everyone. Not everyone was educated in their ways, because when people are educated and they can read the scriptures it is difficult to hide the truth from them. Only the priest was allowed into the innermost shrine of knowledge - nobody else.
These brahmins ruled this country for thousands of years. First they were saying that God was in the Himalayas, because the Himalayas were unapproachable. But by and by people approached the Himalayas and they found no God there. So the brahmins said, "These are not the Himalayas we were talking about, these are just a copy of the real Himalayas which exist in heaven. These are just a reflection - you will not find God in the reflection. The real Kailash, the real Himalayas, is in the other world." Then their gods moved to the planets, to the moon, to the sun.
When man reached the moon for the first time Hindus were very much disturbed, Jainas were very much disturbed. The West does not know how disturbed they were, because the West does not know how much was invested in the moon. In India, there was much disturbance.
There is a priest, a very learned one, who has been trying to prove that the whole thing, this journey to the moon by man, was false. Why? Such a simple fact - it has happened! - why is he denying it?
He has made a big institute. Many have donated hundreds of thousands of rupees to the institute to prove that this is sheer myth that man has reached the moon, to prove that nobody has reached the moon. Why? - because they have much investment there. If man has reached the moon and God is not there, then they must again shift his residence to somewhere else. And these scientists are going to reach everywhere. Now you cannot allow God to stay anywhere for a long period - wherever you say God is, man is going to reach there. Heaven was unapproachable, the sea was unapproachable. There are primitive religions which say that God lives in the sea, under the sea, and there are religions which say God lives in heaven. But one thing is certain for the priest: that God doesn't live here, because if he lives here, then it is very difficult - then what need is there of the priest?
A priest is needed as a broker in between. He is an agent, a mediator. If God exists here, then you can encounter him directly - why is the priest needed? The priest is needed because God is so distant, his voice cannot penetrate you directly. He gives his message to the priest, and then the priest interprets it for you. And through this interpretation he becomes powerful: he knows the keys, you are ignorant; he will lead you, he is the master, the guru - you are to be his followers.
The most cunning profession on the earth is that of the priest. Why the most cunning? - because he is exploiting a very innocent heart. A man who is seeking God, a man who is seeking purity, a man who is seeking truth - that man he is exploiting. If you exploit a man who is seeking money, there is not much difference between you and him because he is also seeking money; there is not much difference. But if you exploit a man who was seeking truth, this is cunning - the most cunning thing possible, the most evil thing possible. Priests should think and say and prove whether they are really the representatives of God, or not really representatives of God. If they are representatives of anything they are representatives of the devil. But they have taken over, they have become the managers.
JESUS SAID: IF THOSE WHO LEAD YOU SAY TO YOU, 'SEE, THE KINGDOM IS IN HEAVEN,'
don't listen to them, otherwise you will miss that kingdom forever and forever.
BUT THE KINGDOM IS WITHIN YOU - it is not anywhere else, it is exactly where you are this moment - AND IT IS WITHOUT YOU. It is within you and it is without you. It is within you like a center, it is without you like a circumference.
What is Jesus saying? Within plus without is the whole world, within plus without is the whole universe - nothing is left. Jesus is saying, "God is this universe, this whole existence. As it is, it is divine. God has dissolved himself into his creation." He is not like a painter who paints and then remains separate. He is like a dancer who dances and becomes one with the dance - you cannot separate the dancer and the dance. You can separate a painter from the painting, you can separate poetry from the poet, but you cannot separate a dancer from the dance. That is why Hindus call their Shiva, Nataraj, the greatest dancer: because there is no separation, he is in the dance.
If you can understand the dance, you can understand the dancer; if you can catch hold of the dance, you have caught hold of the dancer. If you can love this world, you have loved him. If you penetrate even into a flower you will find him. He is hidden here - and he is not hidden because he tries to hide himself; he is hidden because you are not open. Otherwise, he is an open secret. He is everywhere, all around, within and without. The kingdom is within you, it is without you.
IF YOU WILL KNOW YOURSELVES, THEN YOU WILL BE KNOWN AND YOU WILL KNOW THAT YOU ARE THE SONS OF THE LIVING FATHER. BUT IF YOU DO NOT KNOW YOURSELVES, THEN YOU ARE IN POVERTY AND YOU ARE POVERTY.
Listen: the kingdom is within you! Then all temples become useless, because you are the temple.
Then you are the church. Then the Vatican becomes useless, then Rome is just a burden. Then there is no need for a Mecca and Medina, no need for a Girnar and Kashi. You are the temple, the live temple of God. He is within you. Then what is the need of a priest, a mediator? Then the whole profession loses meaning. He exists in you, as you are. He has always been existing in you, as you are.
Somebody asked Rinzai, "I would like to be a Buddha myself. What to do?"
Rinzai said, "If you seek, you will miss - because you are already the Buddha."
It is absurd: Buddha seeking, Buddha making efforts to become a Buddha! You cannot find God because he is not somewhere else, he is within you. And there you never look because all the priests say, "Look: there in heaven, he exists far away. The journey is long; the priest will be needed to help you."
Jesus cuts away the very ground of all churches, temples, priests, mediators. He says, "He is within you." But he also says a very rare and beautiful thing, he also says, "and he is without you."
There are three types of religions: one which says, "God is without." Hindus, Mohammedans, their insistence is that God is without. Then there is another type of religion which says, "God is within."
Jainas, Buddhists, they say you are God, but they never say God is without, no. Jesus says, "God is within and without." This is the greatest synthesis, the highest synthesis possible. He is not choosing an extreme.
One extreme is: God is without. That's why Mohammedans are very much against you if you say, "I am God." They will kill you because this is one of the most evil assertions; it is kufra, blasphemy.
Hence, they killed Mansoor, because in his ecstasy he danced and asserted, "Ana'l haq, aham brahmasmi - I am God." This is blasphemy; a Mohammedan cannot tolerate it because God is without. At the most you can come nearer and nearer to him, but you can never become him. How can a creature become the creator? The creature remains a creature, and the creator remains the creator. So they think this is disrespectful if you assert, "I am God." That means a creature, a slave, a created thing is asserting, "I am the creator." This is blasphemy, it is irreligious.
Then against this pole there is Jainism. They say that God is within; your soul is the supreme God and there is no other God. They have moved to the other extreme, so they don't worship any God; worship has lost meaning for them, they cannot pray. To whom to pray? And prayer is such a beautiful thing, but it has become meaningless.
Look at a Mohammedan in prayer. He is beautiful. He can pray because God is there. There is nothing like a Mohammedan praying. If you want to see prayer, see a Mohammedan praying: he looks so innocent, so completely surrendered - but he is dangerous. If you assert that you are God he will kill you, this man who was praying. Jainas cannot pray, they cannot worship; the dimension of prayer and worship has simply disappeared. They can only meditate. Meditation is allowed because God is within; you just have to close your eyes and meditate.
Jesus reaches the peak of the synthesis. Here he asserts one of the greatest truths: that God is within and without. Prayer is possible, meditation is also possible; you can sing in ecstasy about the without, you can be silent in ecstasy about the within - he is everywhere. No need to drop prayer, no need to drop meditation. Nothing like meditation exists in the Mohammedan tradition; it cannot exist, only prayer is possible. Nothing like prayer exists in Jainism, only meditation exists. Both have moved to extremes.
Jesus remains balanced. He says, "God, the kingdom of God, is within you and it is without you."
IF YOU WILL KNOW YOURSELVES, THEN YOU WILL BE KNOWN.
This is the synthesis. If you know yourself, Jainas will say, you have known all. Finished! There is nowhere further to move. Mohammedans cannot say you can know yourself; they can say you can know God and be filled with his grace. There is no possibility of self-knowledge, because self-knowledge will make you a god. Only God knows himself, not a creature. A man can know God, that's all. He can exist in his glory, he can be filled with his grace, his light; he can allow himself to move and float with the divine force, but no self-knowledge is possible. Jainas say only self-knowledge is possible; if you know yourself, you have known all that is to be known, nothing remains. But Jesus says: IF YOU WILL KNOW YOURSELVES, THEN YOU WILL BE KNOWN.
This is very subtle. What does he mean when he says: ... THEN YOU WILL BE KNOWN? If you know yourself, the whole existence will know you; in your knowledge, the whole existence will look at you. Not only will you be looking at existence, the whole existence will also respond, because God is within and without.
When somebody comes to know himself, it is not only self-knowledge - the whole existence knows you. In your self-knowledge, you are known. God looks at you from every flower, every leaf, every rock - you don't feel you are alone in your self-knowledge. Really, until you know yourself you are alone. When you know yourself, the whole existence knows you. Your knowledge is not a solitary act, it is not a solo thing, it is a symphony. When you know, everything knows you; when you recognize yourself, everything recognizes you - even this tree will be different, even this rock will be different, even a bird will react differently. Why? - because the same one consciousness exists within and without.
When you know yourself the whole existence recognizes you, celebrates. And it should be so, because you are part of existence. The whole existence must celebrate your ultimate knowledge, because a part has become a knower, a part has become a Buddha, a part has become a Christ; through that part, the whole existence has reached a peak, a crescendo. The whole existence will be happy, the whole existence will flower and bloom in a different way. You will be recognized, you will be known.
You will not be alone in your self-knowledge - it is going to be a celebration of the whole. This is the most beautiful thing Jesus asserted: a celebration of existence with your self-knowledge; the whole blissful because one part has bloomed, reached its fulfillment.
IF YOU WILL KNOW YOURSELVES, THEN YOU WILL BE KNOWN.
There is a deep tendency to be known, deeper than that for self-knowledge. You want to be known, a deep desire is there that everybody should know you. It may be moving in a wrong direction, you may be trying to get the attention of people through wrong ways, but deep down the desire has a seed, a very meaningful seed. It says that you will not be fulfilled unless the whole existence recognizes you, is happy with you.
You have a need to love, and you have a need to be loved. You have a need to know yourself, and you have a need to be known. A response is needed, otherwise the whole existence is dead; otherwise you alone have come to know, and the whole existence remains silent as if nothing has happened. A man has become a Christ and the whole existence remains unaware, inattentive, not bothering at all, not happy in any way, as if nothing has happened? How can this be so? The whole existence must recognize, because we are not strangers to this existence. This existence is a family, this existence exists as an interrelated phenomenon. One is enlightened and his light fills all hearts, knowingly, unknowingly; everywhere there will be rejoicing, celebration.
This is why Jesus says:
IF YOU WILL KNOW YOURSELVES, THEN YOU WILL BE KNOWN AND YOU WILL KNOW THAT YOU ARE THE SONS OF THE LIVING FATHER.
What have Christians been saying? Just the opposite. They say, "Jesus Christ is the only begotten son of God." Their whole dogma moves around this thing 'the only', because if all are the sons, then what is the specialness in Jesus? Then how is he unique? Then why should he be worshipped?
Just to make Jesus special - and they have forgotten that they are going against Jesus.
Jesus says: ... AND YOU WILL KNOW THAT YOU ARE THE SONS OF THE LIVING FATHER.
Two things - one: everything that exists in this universe is son to the whole, it has to be so. You are born in it, through it. The whole existence has been fathering you - or it would be even better if we could say, is mothering you. It would have been better to use the word mother rather than father, but it was difficult because Jews have remained male chauvinists. It was difficult to say 'mother'.
There are male chauvinist countries, races: Germans call their country 'fatherland' - the only country which is known as fatherland; every other country calls itself the motherland. These Germans are dangerous people - why 'fatherland'? Man and his ego! Why should God be the father? Why should God not be the mother? Why should he be 'he' and not 'she'? Mother seems to be more relevant, because the father does not take much part in the creation of the son. At the most, he just triggers the thing, nothing else. And a father is disposable.
Even an ordinary injection can do; the work of the father can be done by a syringe, he is disposable.
The whole creation comes through the mother: she carries the child for nine months; her blood, her whole being, moves into the child. You exist in the universe as if you exist in a womb.
There are people who have used 'mother' for God. They are more right, but just more right; to be absolutely right is impossible because then God will be both father and mother. He cannot be male, he cannot be female, because there is no one who can trigger the thing. He is both: ardhanarishwar, half-male, half-female; he is both, he and she.
But it depends. When Jesus was there, it would have been very difficult for him to say 'God the mother', because nobody would have understood. His audience was Jewish, and they believed in a very ferocious father God, very revengeful - you went against him, and he would take revenge.
A mother can never be revengeful, she is always forgiving, she is always understanding. A mother never insists on being obeyed, a father insists on being obeyed. The Ten Commandments cannot come from a mother, they can come only from a father. Commandments - the very word is ugly, as if he is a general and existence is something like a military camp - commandments! Then you disobey at your own responsibility and risk.
Jesus used the current language, but I know that he would have preferred 'mother'. A mother is more than a father: a mother exists at the center, a father at the periphery - but God is both. Remember this: I also use the word 'he' for him, but always remember that whenever I use 'he' it is just for convenience. He is both he and she.
And... YOU ARE THE SONS OF THE LIVING FATHER.
Everybody is a son. This is not as logicians, sociologists and psychologists will think - this is not anthropomorphism. It seems, appears, that to think of God as a father or a mother and to think about yourself as a son, you are projecting human relationships onto the cosmic, you are making the whole cosmic phenomenon a family affair; you are thinking in human terms. This is a condemnation.
Sociologists, psychologists, who say that this is anthropocentrism - that man thinks of himself as if he is in the center, and projects his own terms, feelings about everything - whenever they say this is anthropocentric, they are saying this is wrong. But they have not understood: it appears anthropocentric, it has to appear so, because whatsoever man says is bound to be human. Even an objective truth is going to be colored by the person who asserts it. Even objectivity cannot be without the subjective; the subjective goes and colors it.
Even scientific truths are not objective: the man who discovered them has entered into them. There is no possibility of coming to the objective truth, because the knower will almost always color it. All knowledge is personal. And whenever man says something, because man says it, it is going to be human. And there is no need to be apologetic about it - it is beautiful.
When Jesus says that we are all sons of God this is just a symbol, a simile. What does he mean? He means that, between the creator and the created, the relationship is not mechanical, it is organic.
The relationship is not just like a mechanic creating a machine - he is not a father because he remains aloof, out of it, detached. This is the meaning: God cannot be detached from you. He is just like your father, attached to you, moving through you, working through you, caring for you, loving you, searching for you, in every way creating a blissful world around you so that you can reach fulfillment.
When Jesus says, "God is the father," he means all these things: that the universe cares about you, it helps you. Not only are you in search of God, God is also in search of you. The universe is not dead and detached, it responds with a loving heart. If you cry, it cries with you. If you laugh, it laughs with you. If you are in pain, existence feels the pain. If you are happy, the whole existence feels happy with you. Between you and existence there is a deep relationship. This is the emphasis: the relationship of a father to a son.
Even if the father dies, he hopes to live through the son; he will be somewhere in the son, the son has become just a new version of the father. That is the meaning: the son is just a rebirth of the father. That's why Jesus says again and again, "I and my father are one." He means the son represents the father - he is the father. They are joined together; they are not two, they are one and the relationship is organic, and you need not feel alone.
Now the whole world feels an aloneness. Everybody feels a stranger, and everybody is in difficulty.
And people come to me and they ask, "How to relate?" What has happened? This is a very new question - nobody ever asked two hundred years ago, "How to relate?" Now everybody asks, "How to relate?" Relationship has become very difficult. It is a logical consequence: if you cannot relate to the whole, you cannot relate to anybody; if you can relate to the whole, then you can relate to anybody. You cannot relate to your father if you cannot relate to the universe - impossible, because that is the source of all. When religion disappeared, relationship disappeared.
A country which has become irreligious will always feel difficulties in relationship. You cannot relate to your wife, to your brother, to your sister, to your son, to your father, to your mother - impossible!
Relationship is impossible because the base of all relationship has disappeared. You have denied, you have said, "God is no more, God is dead." Then the whole universe is alien, and you feel alienation, you feel cut off, unrelated; then you have no roots in it, and you feel the universe is not caring about you.
The universe of the scientist and the universe of a religious man like Jesus are totally different.
The universe for the scientist is just accidental: there exists no relationship between you and the universe; it is uncaring, it does not bother about you. You are just accidental; if you were not there, existence would not have felt your absence a little bit; if you are there, your presence is not known to the universe. If you disappear, the universe is not going to shed tears for you.
The universe of the scientist is dead. Whenever you say, "God is dead," the universe is dead. And if you live in a dead universe how can you relate? Then you live among things. Everything will be accidental, just arbitrary. You have to make some arrangements, but there is no organic unity. You exist alone, and then you carry the whole burden. It is just like a small, lost child: he was holding his father's hand, now he has lost the hand and he cries and weeps - and there is nobody to hear.
The situation of man is just this: a small child who was holding the hand of his father is now lost in the wood. With the hand of the father in his hand, he walked like an emperor, unafraid. There was no fear because father was there; it was his responsibility, the child was not responsible for anything.
Whatsoever was needed would be done, he was not to worry about himself. He walked, he looked at the butterflies, at the flowers, at the skies, he enjoyed everything. Life was blissful. Suddenly, he becomes aware that the hand is not there - he has lost his father. Now there are no butterflies, no flowers. Everything has become stony, dead, and everything is alien and foreign, inimical. Now from every shadow of every tree there is danger all around; he is afraid of death. From any corner, any moment, death will jump and kill him.
Just a moment before everything was alive, friendly, a rapport was there between the child and the whole universe. Why? - because the hand of the father was there. Through the father, the universe was friendly; it was a relationship. Father disappeared, now relationship has disappeared. Now he is crying, now he is weeping, now he is in deep anxiety, anguish. This is the situation of the modern man, because you have become incapable of looking at the universe as a father or a mother. No wonder everybody is neurotic! This child will become neurotic, this child will become abnormal. This child will always carry a wound in his chest, and that wound will disturb all his relationships. He cannot feel at home anywhere now.
Look at your hand. You can't feel a cosmic hand in it? Then you will be in difficulty. This is what Jesus says: "God is the father. This whole universe cares about you." Otherwise, why should you be here? Why should you be allowed to exist? This whole universe cares about you. It has brought you up to this point of consciousness, it wants to carry you to the ultimate peak, to the final peak of enlightenment - it helps you in every way. Even if you go astray it will follow you. Feel the hand in your hand, and suddenly the total perspective changes.
And Jesus says, "Everybody is the son" - not only Jesus alone. But Christianity cannot exist if everybody is the son, because then there is nothing unique in Jesus. This attitude is false.
Everybody is the son, and still Jesus is unique, because he has recognized it and you are still in search.
The uniqueness is not in the nature of being, the uniqueness exists in the nature of recognition.
Jesus knows this and you don't know. Hindus have always said that the difference between one who is enlightened and one who is ignorant is not in being, but only in knowing. It is just as if somebody is asleep and you are awake; being is the same, but one who is asleep dreams, and you are not dreaming. Shake him, make him awake, and he is as awake as you are - his dreams have disappeared. Only a shaking is needed. Jesus is awake and you are fast asleep, that is the distinction. In this respect he is unique, but not in being. He himself says: YOU ARE THE SONS OF THE LIVING FATHER.
And the second insistence is on 'the living father', because ordinarily a father is going to die. The physical part of the father will die, the biological part of the father will die, but the cosmic whole is always alive, it never dies - it is eternity.
Just a few decades ago Nietzsche declared, "God is dead!" That is impossible, because the universe cannot die, and God is not a person. If he were a person, he could die - persons have to die. God is not a form - forms have to die; God has no body - bodies have to die. God is all. In God we are born and we die. We take form and the form disappears, but the whole remains. The whole cannot die, the whole is life itself. So you are not living in a dead universe but in an alive God who is a father, a mother; the relationship is deep and organic. You are not uncared for, somebody goes on looking after you.
This feeling gives you roots, then you don't feel a stranger; then you are not an outsider, you are an insider. This is your home.
BUT IF YOU DO NOT KNOW YOURSELVES, THEN YOU ARE IN POVERTY.
This is the only poverty: ignorance of oneself - there is no other poverty. You may not have riches, you may not have great palaces, you may not have empires, but those are not real riches. Only one thing is real wealth and that is self-knowledge, because it cannot be destroyed.
And Jesus says: BUT IF YOU DO NOT KNOW YOURSELVES, THEN YOU ARE IN POVERTY...
and not only that... YOU ARE POVERTY.
You are poor. There is only one poverty: when you don't know yourself. Why is it poverty? - because you are emperors, sons of a living God! The greatest that is possible has happened to you, and you are unaware of it and you go on begging.
All desires are begging. It is said that if wishes were horses, beggars would be the riders. But all desires are horses, and beggars are riders - you are all riders. Look at your horses: they are your desires, begging, demanding, asking - and you have all within you but you never look within. Once you look, riches will be revealed, eternal, in abundance, you cannot exhaust them. And once you look within the whole existence recognizes your emperorship, the whole existence recognizes who you are: you are the son of the whole. Then all begging disappears, you become rich for the first time.
BUT IF YOU DO NOT KNOW YOURSELVES, THEN YOU ARE IN POVERTY AND YOU ARE POVERTY.
I have heard a story: Once it happened, a great emperor was very much annoyed by his son and his ways and his style of life. He was the only son, but he annoyed his father so much that the son was expelled from the kingdom. He was the son of a great emperor so he knew nothing, he was not skilled in anything - emperors are not skilled in anything. He did not know how to do anything, he had not learned; everything had always been done for him, he never knew that you have to do things on your own. But he was a lover of music. That was the only thing he could do; he had learned it as a hobby. He played on his sitar, that was the only thing he knew.
So he started begging. He would play on his sitar and beg. If emperors lose their empires they cannot do anything except beg. This is something beautiful, it shows that deep down emperors are beggars. Just because of the empire you cannot see their beggary. If the empire is taken away they are beggars, they cannot do anything else. For ten years continuously he was begging. He completely forgot that he was the son of a great emperor. Ten years is too long to remember. And when you are a beggar every day from the morning to the evening, how can you remember that you are the son of a great emperor?
He became a beggar and he forgot himself completely, even the memory went. And these memories are bad, nightmare-like, you want to forget them, because through them much misery comes in the mind. Comparison comes: "I am the son of a great emperor - and begging!" Then begging becomes too painful. So he simply dropped the idea, he simply forgot, he became identified with the begging.
After ten years, the father started feeling for the son. The son was not exactly right, his ways were different, but he was the only son. And now the father was getting old and any day he would die.
And the son was his heir, he had to be brought back. So his vizier went in search.
The vizier arrived. Even if the son had completely forgotten that he was the son of an emperor, even if he had completely identified with being a beggar, still something had remained - because it was not part of his memory, it was part of his being. The way he walked, even the way he begged, was just like an emperor. He would beg, but as if he were obliging you; the way he would look was as if he had obliged you by begging. The way he walked was kingly; his clothes were rotten, but still they were the same clothes that he had used as a prince. He was dirty, unclean, but you could see that he had a beautiful face hidden under that dirt. And his eyes: even if he was a beggar, his eyes were still of that same ego, the same pride. Mentally, consciously he had forgotten, but unconsciously he was still the king, the heir of a great emperor.
The vizier recognized him. The moment when he recognized him, he was begging. Under a tree a few people were playing cards, and he was begging there. It was a summer afternoon, very hot, and he had no shoes, he was perspiring, and he was begging for a few paise, saying, "Give me something - I have been hungry for two days." The vizier recognized him, and the chariot in which the vizier had come stopped. The vizier came down, he touched the feet of the son, and the son looked at him and he said, "What is the matter?"
The vizier said, "Your father the emperor has called you back. He has forgiven you." In an instant the beggar disappeared. Nothing was to be done - in an instant, the recognition that, "My father has called me back, I am forgiven!" and the beggar disappeared. The clothes were the same, the man was still dirty, but everything changed: there was glory, a light, an aura around him.
He gave orders to the vizier; begging disappeared. He said, "Go into the market, purchase shoes and clothes for me and arrange a good bath." He went up into the chariot and he said, "Take me to the best hotel in the town!" And the vizier had to follow the chariot on foot.
This is a Sufi story. This is your situation also: once you are recognized by the father, by God, your begging disappears - suddenly, in an instant! Nothing is to be done because you have always been the same. Only the identity had gone wrong, only in the superficial part of the mind you had become something else. Deep down you have remained sons of God.
But this will happen only if you know yourself. Then the whole universe knows you, recognizes you.
And Jesus says:
BUT IF YOU DO NOT KNOW YOURSELVES, THEN YOU ARE IN POVERTY AND YOU ARE POVERTY.
Enough for today.