I don't answer your questions, I answer your hearts
DURING THE DISCOURSES YOU GAVE IN POONA, YOU WERE OFTEN TALKING ABOUT SURRENDER. WHEN YOU WERE IN SILENCE SHEELA WAS MISUSING THE SENSE OF SURRENDER TO MAKE PEOPLE OBEDIENT, AND THEN, EVEN HEARING THE WORDS "JUST SURRENDER" MADE ME FEEL CLOSED. NOW, BEING HERE WITH YOU, THE WORD "SURRENDER" DOES NOT ONLY REACH MY MIND BUT MY BEING, AND I FEEL COMFORTABLE WITH ITS TRUE MEANING. WOULD YOU PLEASE TALK ABOUT SURRENDER?
It is not only the word "surrender"... there are many words. When heard, they have one meaning; when experienced, they have a totally different meaning. And the problem is how to make you comprehend the experienced meaning through the word. It may be surrender, it may be love, it may be trust.
You heard me talk about surrender. Then certainly it seemed to be that "surrender" means submission, that "surrender" means a kind of spiritual slavery, that "surrender" means you do not have any say even about your own life; somebody else commands it. Then "surrender" means simply to follow, to believe, never doubt, never enquire. It hurts. All these meanings hurt. They hurt your individuality, they hurt your self-respect, they hurt your freedom. That's why it was possible in the commune that while I was silent the word "surrender" could be misused.
But when you are near me - and I am not talking about surrender at all - just your nearness, my presence and your presence, falling in a synchronicity...
There are two light bulbs here, separate, individual - but their light is meeting everywhere in the room, their light is filling the room as one.
Presence is something like that. It is not material; if it was material there would be conflict. The lights of these two bulbs have not drawn a line between them: "Up to here is my territory and don't dare interfere with my territory." They don't have a territory. You can have hundreds of lights and there will be no conflict, no quarrel, because light is a quality. So there is no conflict.
Anything material occupies a certain space; then nothing else can occupy the same space. If this chair is here, then no other chair can occupy the same space. But about light it is different - the space is the same. There can be a hundred candles occupying the same space - not the candles, but the light; not your body but your presence.
I am not talking about surrender, but you are experiencing it. It is no longer destructive of your self-respect, no longer destructive of your individuality. It has nothing to do with obedience; it has nothing to do with any submission.
The word ?surrender' comes from the vocabulary associated with war. When two countries are fighting, the country which is losing finally has to surrender. It is not a beautiful word. Its associations are ugly. One becomes victorious, another is defeated and erased.
Alexander the Great conquered the frontier land of India. The man who was fighting him was a man of immense insight and immense power - but not physical power. Alexander had a bigger army, more developed techniques of destruction.
Poras - that was the name of the man who ruled on the boundary of India - was really a brave man. His very name "Poras" means a real man, an authentic man. And Alexander, for the first time, was afraid; although he had more armies, he did not have that spiritual quality that Poras had, that meditativeness, that presence.
Alexander had heard many stories about Poras: nobody has ever been able to conquer his land although bigger armies have attacked it. The man has something in him, so that his very presence makes his army ten times bigger. His people feel that their victory is certain because Poras is leading them, and Poras knows no defeat.
Alexander was, for the first time, trembling inside, and for the first time he behaved as a politician - ugly. Up to that point he had simply been a great warrior, but hearing about Poras, he thought, "He is a far greater warrior, not only physically but spiritually; and just an army won't do." So Alexander played a cunning strategy.
In India, in the month of Shravan in the rainy season, there is a day, the day of brothers and sisters.
The sister binds a thread to the brother's wrist. It is called rakshabandhan, a contract that "You will protect me." The brother promises her that even if he has to lose his life he will protect her.
And Alexander sent his wife on that day to the palace of Poras. Of course she was received with great honor. Everybody was surprised that she had come, because on the other side of the Sindhu River Alexander was waiting for the right time to attack. And his wife came alone. She said, "I want to see Poras."
Poras had no sister. She went to Poras and she said, "You don't have any sister; I don't have any brother. I want to become your sister." And she had brought the traditional thread.
She put the thread on the wrist of Poras, and Poras touched the feet of the woman and said, "You need not be afraid of anything. As long as I am alive I will protect you. If you want to ask for anything that I can give to you, I will be honored." And she said, "In the war that is going to happen please don't kill my husband; he is your brother-in-law. You will be destroying my lover. Remember this thread. You have promised to protect me."
Poras could see the strategy, but he was a man of his word. He said, "Don't be worried." And she was sent with security so that she could reach her camp on the other side.
And this was the reason that Poras was defeated. History books written by Westerners simply don't mention the fact; it was not a victory for Alexander, it was a victory for Poras.
There came a time when Poras attacked Alexander, and Alexander fell from his horse. Poras was on his elephant - Indian armies fought on elephants - and he was just going to kill Alexander when he saw the thread on his own wrist. The spear that was going to kill turned back in a second, and Poras said to Alexander, "I cannot kill you. I have promised your wife that I will not harm anything that harms her, that I will protect her."
This was the reason that Poras lost the war. But Alexander still could not understand, because he could not understand the way of the East, that Eastern people have been thinking in totally different terms. It was really a spiritual victory, a great victory for Poras.
Poras was brought in chains, handcuffed, into the court of Alexander, but he came there like a lion - of course encaged.
And this is the sentence that I want you to understand. Alexander said to him... Remember that this man Poras is certainly rare: his spear had reached just near Alexander's heart; one second more and he would have been dead, and he pulled it back because of a promise given to an unknown woman.
Alexander asked Poras, "How do you want to be treated?"
Poras laughed, and he said, "I should be treated as an emperor is treated by another emperor."
There was silence in the hall. In Alexander's court they had never heard such a thing - that a king who has been enslaved should laugh and say, "There is no question. You should have learned manners. An emperor should be treated as an emperor."
For a moment Alexander was indecisive, but then his better self came over him. He remembered, because seeing on the wrist of Poras the same thread... It was still there; it is not removed until it falls off by itself.
He told the people, "Make him free. Give his kingdom back to him. And we cannot go deeper into India. It is dangerous. If on the frontier this episode happened, what will happen in the interior parts we don't know. We are going back. It is enough that we have conquered."
"Surrender" comes from defeating someone in a fight. It still keeps the violence in it. It is obscene.
But there is no other word to express the experience you are feeling now - particularly in English there is no word.
The experience is tremendously important. Nobody is conquering you, nobody is defeating you.
You are not being submissive to anybody. Nothing is lost. Your self-respect is not touched. In fact, everything becomes enhanced, more strengthened. You are better for it than you were before. It is a subtle meeting and merging of the non-material presences.
So what you are feeling here is really the meaning of what I was talking about as "surrender." I was trying to explain to you, through that word, this experience, and now you know that that word is not adequate - not only not adequate, it is something ugly.
And the same will happen on many levels. You will come to know a love that is not the love you have heard of before, that you have been in before. It cannot be said but you will feel it. It is almost tangible - not a word, but a wordless reality. The same will be about trust.
And beyond love and trust both, there is something that has no name. It can be experienced only in a close feeling of oneness, in silence, without any effort and without any conditions. Not that you are doing it - if you do it, you will miss it. It is something that is happening. You are just a watcher.
Anything that happens and you remain just a witness, is part of spiritual growth.
But when we bring these experiences into words we have to come down from the faraway stars to the muddy earth, and much is lost on the way. And by the time you have reached to the world of language, if you know the experience you are surprised that this word has not even a faraway echo of the reality in it.
But this is the problem of language all over the world because language has been developed by man for ordinary purposes, for mundane purposes. It has not been developed by the awakened people, and the awakened people will not develop it for the simple reason that they do not need to talk with each other. Their silence is enough a song, their presence is enough a message. Just looking into each other's eyes is enough, or holding each other's hand is enough.
So there is never going to be a language of the awakened people. They don't need it. And the people who need it don't have the experience. And if you use their words, naturally those words are overloaded with wrong associations. So this is good, that you felt the essence of surrender, although we were not talking about it. I have not even mentioned the word.
And this is the way you will come to experience many things which I am not mentioning. I want you really to live it, feel it, be it. I want you to remind me - "Perhaps this is the thing that you were talking about before, but we never understood it."
SOMETIMES I FEEL VERY STRONG AND RADIANT. WHATEVER HAPPENS AROUND ME DOESN'T REALLY AFFECT ME. I FEEL A BEAUTIFUL DISTANCE FROM EVENTS. BUT AT OTHER TIMES I FEEL MY SKIN HAS BEEN STRIPPED AWAY AND EVERYTHING CAN REACH DEEPLY INTO ME; A SEEMINGLY UNFRIENDLY WORD OR GESTURE CAN HURT ME FOR HOURS. I WANT TO HIDE IN SOME CORNER FEELING VERY WEAK.
I HAVE ALSO EXPERIENCED THAT A LOVING ATMOSPHERE AROUND ME WHEN I'M IN THIS MOOD CAN CREATE A DEEP JOY IN ME, BUT OFTEN I DON'T WANT TO COME OUT OF MY CORNER. I KNOW PERFECTLY WELL I HAVE REGRESSED IN THESE STATES, BUT THIS IS FREQUENTLY JUST AN INTELLECTUAL INSIGHT, NOT REALLY A HELP IN DROPPING THE DIS-EASE. I DON'T LIKE THIS CHILDISHNESS, BUT APPARENTLY I HAVE TO FACE IT IN ORDER TO TAKE THIS STEP.
CAN YOU HELP?
The question is significant, with many implications. First, when you are feeling good, radiant, nothing touches you, nothing affects you. That means nothing really ever affects you. It is just that you are missing your radiance, you are missing your awareness, your aloofness. So rather than becoming too much obsessed with a negative thing, regression into childhood, hiding in a corner and not wanting to come out - and then thinking how to face it, how to drop it - don't concentrate on it.
When you know moments in which you are not touched by anything, then concentrate on the positive, spread that radiance, that aloofness, that awareness, so that more and more you are covered with it. The other will disappear on its own accord. You need not even bother about it.
This is something basic in spiritual growth: if you get bothered about something, then some very small thing starts looking very big. You have a small wound, and you start playing with the wound, and you don't allow it to heal - and you want the wound to heal. But touching the wound again and again and remaining concentrated on the wound is not going to heal it. Forget all about it. The body has its own wisdom; it will heal it. Don't interfere in the body's way.
The mind has its own way. This regression into childhood is a problem of the mind, and the radiance you feel is an experience of your being. Remember the higher. Be filled more and more with the higher so that the lower disappears on its own accord. Rather than getting concerned with the lower... In those concerns the higher will not appear, and you will find the lower becoming more and more strong.
The very idea that you want to drop it is dangerous, because whenever you want to drop something, that means you are very much attached to it. If somebody comes to his door every morning, after collecting all the junk from cleaning the house, and shouts to the neighbor, "I want to throw it. I really want to throw it..." And the person is holding tight to all that junk while he is shouting, "I want to throw it. I really want to drop it." Nobody is preventing. Nobody is concerned. It is junk. There is no need to make so much fuss about it, simply drop it.
But you can simply drop it only if you are at a higher stage. Then only can you see it is junk. If you are in the stage itself, you cannot drop it. You can think.
And remember, thinking that "I want to drop it" is really a way of protecting it. Or thinking, "I don't want it." The more fanatically you shout that you want to drop it shows how deeply you are entrenched in it.
There is no question of dropping anything.
My understanding is, rather than dropping anything, why not move away?
These are two different things.
You are on a rung of the ladder. You want to drop it, and you are standing on it. You will fall flat if you drop it. The only way to drop it is move ahead to a higher rung, and the lower is no more effective.
The farther you go from the lower, the more it is disappearing in the darkness.
So always remember, never get concentrated on the negative.
But all the religions have been teaching people negative things. They are responsible for humanity's misery and the stoppage of evolution.
Mahatma Gandhi had five basic principles which are accepted by all the religions of India as five basic principles. But in looking at those basic principles the most important thing to be noted is that they are all negative.
Ahimsa, nonviolence - that "non" shows you the negative attitude. In fact they should be concerned with violence, because that is the real problem. When they say ahimsa, nonviolence, they are saying, "We don't want violence, no violence, nonviolence."
Asteya, no non-truth; they cannot say simply truth. They have to go search a roundabout way, "no non-truth," to make it negative. But the emphasis becomes on non-truth. Non-truth has to be dropped; not that you have to discover truth. Non-truth will disappear.
Aswad - to eat without tasting - "a" in Sanskrit means "non," "no;" that is the negative. Ahimsa, asteya, aswad: everything has to be negative. All the religions of India have accepted those five without anybody in the whole history noting a simple fact: why should they make all of them negative when there are positives available? It is not just incidental.
That's how our mind functions. Just a small thing and it makes it big, becomes concentrated on it, wants to drop it, starts fighting with it, and it becomes bigger by fighting. The more you fight with it, the more you give energy to it, and the more energy it has, many more times you are defeated.
So a strange, vicious circle is created. You fight, you fail: and each time you fail, your courage to fight again is less. You know that it is not a simple job, you have fought before; so failure becomes more stamped on your mind - that whatever you do you are going to fail. You can try once more, but you will fail. Nobody can win fighting against any negative state.
So don't think in terms of dropping your regression into childhood. You already know that there are moments when you don't regress, so why not concentrate on that state and spread it all over you.
Concentrate on the positive and the regression will disappear, because it is only a memory. You are no more a child. It is nothing much, just writing on water.
The child you have left far behind. It is just a memory. Don't make it very solid by fighting with it.
The best that you can do about it is, ignore it. Don't give any juice to it. Even if once in a while it happens, ignore it; just make it clear to yourself it is just a memory and nothing else. You cannot regress, it is only the memory of childhood. You cannot become a child, but the memory is there.
And in childhood, every child has moments of helplessness. He is small, dependent; everybody is big and powerful, so he finds a small corner in the house and hides there, weeps there. That memory is still there, but it is only a memory. It can be erased, and the simple way to erase it...
Your moments of radiance are a reality, not a memory; they are happening now. They are powerful.
Spread those moments more.
Just look into those moments, what triggers them, what brings them. Walking on the beach helps it, going to the swimming pool helps it, sitting silently under a tree helps it, playing the guitar helps it. Whatever helps it, all those elements, find them out and let them become more and more strong.
And the memory has no power; you give power to it. It will disappear.
I would not like you to drop it. I would like it to disappear on its own accord. Then it will not leave even a scratch behind. If you drop it... in the first place, nobody has ever been able to drop anything.
I am making it a categorical statement: nobody in the whole history of man has been able to drop anything. Those who have tried have failed. And if somehow they managed to drop one thing, they had to substitute it by something similar. Somebody drops smoking and starts chewing gum.
Nothing is dropped. People have dropped - at least they believed that they have dropped everything, renounced everything - but in a certain situation what they thought has been dropped suddenly pops up.
Ramateertha, a very famous old Hindu sannyasin, traveled all over the world and was tremendously respected everywhere. He was a good orator and a beautiful person. But being respected around the world... because to Christians he was praising Christ, and to Jews he was praising Moses, and to Mohammedans he was praising Mohammed and talking about the KORAN. Naturally, he was respected. He thought he was respected, and that's where he was wrong. If he had criticized Mohammed, the same Mohammedans who were respecting him would have killed him; then he would have known what was respected. Those Mohammedans were enjoying that a Hindu sannyasin is praising the glory of the KORAN, their holy book, their prophet, their God. Naturally, they would respect that person. It was a mutual phenomenon.
Ramateertha came back to India from his tour all over the world, and deep down he was expecting that if in other countries he was so much respected, then in India he was going to be immensely respected. He wanted to start his movement from Varanasi, the center of the Hindu religion.
And as he stood to speak, one brahmin scholar stood up and said, "Before you start speaking, I want to ask two questions. First, do you know Sanskrit?"
Ramateertha was brought up in the frontier provinces of India which are now in Pakistan where Persian and Urdu are the languages.
He said, "No, Sanskrit I don't know, but I have read all the Sanskrit scriptures translated into English or Persian or Urdu."
The scholar laughed and said, "Then first study Sanskrit because there is no way to translate it. It is a divine language, and you cannot translate it into mundane languages. First learn Sanskrit and then come here.
"Second, who has given you sannyas?"
Ramateertha had not taken sannyas from anybody. He was a professor in Lahore University when Vivekananda came back from America and toured all over India. Vivekananda spoke in Lahore University where Ramateertha was a professor of mathematics, and he was so impressed that he simply dropped his job and changed his clothes. Ramateertha had no idea that sannyas has to be taken. He simply became a sannyasin with orange clothes and went to the West, from where Vivekananda had returned. So there were already a few people who were interested in Vivekananda, and they immediately gathered around Ramateertha.
So Ramateertha said, "I have not taken sannyas from anyone." And all the people who had gathered laughed.
They said, "Look at this idiot. He neither knows Sanskrit nor has he been initiated. You should feel ashamed of yourself. And you became a messenger of Hinduism to the world!"
Ramateertha had been many times in such situations outside India, but they had never touched him.
Nothing had ever been a wound in him. People had insulted him, people had protested against him, fanatic Christians had been shouting slogans against him, but nothing had touched him. But that day something happened. He was so much in agony that he went home and threw away his orange clothes, changed into ordinary clothes, and asked a brahmin to teach him Sanskrit.
Now if he was really a realized man, he would have told them, "Nothing is divine as far as languages are concerned. No language is divine, although all languages proclaim that they are divine.
"And language has nothing to do with experience. Just by knowing Sanskrit do you think you become self-realized? Then all these pundits are self-realized. Then Buddha and Mahavira were not self- realized, because they had no knowledge of Sanskrit.
"And whom do you think initiated Buddha? Initiation or no initiation, sannyas is your own decision.
You can take it from somebody else, you can take it yourself."
But he could not say simple things. He was ashamed before the ordinary scholars of Sanskrit, who know nothing of realization or of sannyas. He moved from there to the Himalayas, and the shock was so deep that finally he committed suicide - he jumped into the Ganges from the mountain.
He had come with such a great expectation of respect, that he would be hailed as the greatest Hindu of the age - and what happened was just the opposite.
Ramateertha's followers say that he took samadhi in the Ganges. It was not samadhi; samadhi is possible only when you are enlightened and you feel that this body is no more needed, that it has done its work and it should go to rest. It is a decision out of fulfillment, not out of frustration, not out of despair, not out of failure. But at such a time Ramateertha was not blissful. All his blissfulness had disappeared. He had become very bitter, very angry, and out of shame he committed suicide.
And still there is a small group who goes on following Ramateertha's books. I have looked at those books. There is nothing; he simply was a good orator. There is not a single statement that shows any indication of his being enlightened.
And what happened in the end makes it clear that his whole life was just... he was a good professor, articulate - he could speak. Seeing Vivekananda being received as a great man, he became ambitious. This was an ambition.
People say that he renounced his family. I will not say that, because when his wife came to see him in the Himalayas he told his companion Pooran Singh, "Close the doors. I don't want to see that woman." Even Pooran Singh could not believe it. In his diary he has written, "I told him if you have renounced your wife, then how do you recognize that she is your wife? If you have renounced, there is no question of recognition; all women are the same. You have been seeing all kinds of women, and you cannot see this poor woman who has come from far away?
"She has sold all her ornaments - you have left her no other money - to travel just to see you, just to touch your feet, and you are behaving brutally. So if you tell me that you want me to close the doors, then I am leaving you. It is enough! What you did in Varanasi and what you are doing now is enough for me to understand that you have been just posing, acting. Otherwise, let that woman come in."
And it is immediately after this that Ramateertha jumped into the Ganges.
If you have renounced a woman as your wife, then she has again become an ordinary woman like any other; no distinction should exist in you. If any distinction exists, that means that that renouncing was false.
And my understanding is, every renouncing is false unless things drop by themselves - whether it is money, whether it is some childhood memory, whether it is some mental problem. Do not try to drop them. In dropping them you are giving them importance. They need to be ignored.
Put your whole energy into that which is grown-up in you, which is growing more. When no energy is left for your childhood memories to be relived again, they will disappear. There is no direct action needed.
Let me repeat it again: no direct action against any negative thing; otherwise you will always be caught in its net. Focus on the positive, on the affirmative. It is the affirmative, the positive, that is going to bring you freedom, freedom from these problems.
IF THE HEART CANNOT ASK QUESTIONS, THEN IS IT MY MIND THAT BLEEDS LIKE A HEART WHEN I ASK YOU CERTAIN THINGS?
The heart cannot ask any questions, but it can trigger the mind to ask questions for it. The heart itself has no language, but it has a way of its own to trigger the mind to ask its questions. Of course in this transfer from heart to mind, the question changes its form; it is no more exactly the same.
Sometimes it can even be the opposite.
That's why the heart may weep and cry. It feels helpless. It cannot ask. It has to use the mind, and the mind can ask only in a way which is of the mind and not of the heart.
It is like you give poetry to a mathematician and tell him to translate poetry into mathematics. If the mathematician is intelligent he will refuse: "This is nonsense. It cannot be done. How can poetry be translated into mathematics?" But if he is some kind of eccentric mathematician, he may do the job.
It will be a butcher's job.
You will be surprised to know that in Sanskrit there are books written in poetry on medicine, on grammar. Now what has grammar to do with poetry? What has medicine to do with poetry?
I was puzzled from my childhood. In that small city there were a few ayurvedic physicians, and they all wrote their names on their signboards with the word kaviraj in front of their name. Kaviraj means poet, king of poets. I could not conceive that a doctor ... why? - and all of them? It is possible that one physician may be a poet too. But no, it was a degree. After passing a few degrees, this was the last degree. Just the way contemporary physicians will write "doctor" in front, they write "kaviraj" in front, and kaviraj means king of poets.
Even in my childhood I was concerned. I told my father that, "Everything is okay, but if I am sick please avoid these kaviraj - because what has medicine to do with being a kaviraj?"
One of his friends was himself a very famous physician. And I used to go to him. And I asked him, "You tell me what poetries you have written. I would like to see them ."
He said, "What poetries? It is just traditional. "
In the past, medicine and books on medicine were written in poetry, so it became combined. Only poets were writing books on medicine. And of course they were the kings of poets because an ordinary poet cannot write poetry on medicine. What romance can you have with medicine, describing all kinds of herbs and roots and their mixtures? What kind of romance can you have? But linguistically it can be managed: rather than writing it in prose, you can manage to write it in poetry.
So he told me, "It is just traditional. Don't think that we are poets. We know nothing about poetry, but from the days of the past the most ancient books are written in poetic form, not in prose. So those who wrote those books became really the kings of poets. And now it has become an honorable degree. One who writes a thesis on those ancient books is given this degree of kaviraj. But it is stupid."
The heart will cry and weep because it has only a vague sense of asking a question. It cannot even make clear to itself what the question is. Perhaps it is not a question. Perhaps it simply wants to express itself, its gratitude, its love, its trust, the way it feels in my presence. In transferring this to the mind, the mind will make a question out of it. Mind is a question creating factory: you put anything into it and out comes a question.
I have heard about a poor man who had come to a big city. He was old. He had never seen a big city and he had never seen an elevator. He saw an old woman, a very old woman, entering the elevator, and the elevator closed. He stood there watching what was happening, where the old woman got lost. The elevator disappeared upwards. He said, "My God, what will happen to that old woman?
She has nobody even to help her, and where will she land and what will happen?"
After a few minutes the elevator came back and a beautiful young girl came out. He said, "Now I understand. But I'm an idiot. I left my wife at home! So this is a machine ... you put an old woman into it and within five minutes it changes and a young girl comes out. My old woman would have loved it.
"Next time," he said, "when I come I will bring her." He didn't think of himself because he was standing in front of an elevator where it was written "Only for Women." He thought perhaps this machine works only for women, not for men. But no harm; at least my wife can get young, and there may be some machine somewhere else that makes men also young.
The mind continuously creates questions. It gets a certain vibe from the heart and immediately translates it into a question. And the heart weeps first because this is not what it had wanted.
But you need not be worried. I don't answer your questions, I answer your hearts. So I try to find out what mischief your mind has done with the question, and I try to take out the essential part that the heart may have been wanting to express.
So don't cry and weep. The question is from Chetana - she is a perfect crying and weeping person.
Just wait for my answer; don't start crying and weeping with the question. The mind cannot do anything else.