The Tender Trap
The first question:
IF TRUTH CANNOT BE EXPRESSED IN WORDS, THEN WHY HAVE ALL THE BUDDHAS USED WORDS?
THE GREAT MYSTIC, Rabia of Basra, was immensely beautiful. And a beauty not of this world.
Once a rich young man from Iran comes to Basra. He asks people, "Is there anything that is out of the way, something special here?"
"Yes," they all tell him. "We have the most beautiful woman of the world!"
The young man naturally becomes interested and he asks, "Where can I find her?"
And they all laugh and say, "Well, where else?... in a brothel!"
That repulses the rich young man, but finally he decides to go. And when he gets there, the matron asks for an exorbitant fee. He pays the fee and is ushered in. There, in a silent and simple room, a figure is praying. What beauty she has! He has never seen such beauty and grace, not even in his dreams. Just to be there is a benediction, and the prayerful atmosphere starts affecting him. He forgets about his passion. He is entering into another kind of space. He is drugged. He is turned on to God.
An hour passes and he intensely feels he is in a temple! Oh, such joy and such purity! He goes on feasting on her beauty. But it is no more the beauty of a human being - it is God's beauty. It no more has anything to do with the body - it is utterly other-worldly.
And then Rabia opens her eyes, those lotus eyes, and he looks into them, and there is no woman in front of him - he is facing God. And this way the whole night passes, as if it were only a moment.
The sun is rising and its rays are coming through the windows, and he feels it is time to go. He says to Rabia, "I am your slave. Tell me anything, anything in the world that I can do for you."
She says, "I have only one little request."
He asks, "What is it?"
Rabia says, "Never tell anybody what you have seen and experienced here. Allow the people to come to me - this beauty is nothing but a trap set for them. I use it as a door for them to enter God.
Please, promise me that you will never tell others what you have experienced here tonight. Let them come to a whore and a brothel, because otherwise they will never come to me."
"Oh!" he says, "So this is the secret of this city. The whole city clamours after your beauty, yet nobody tells me about his experience."
Rabia laughs and says, "Yes, I extract the promise, this promise, from all of them."
Rabia used her beauty as a trap. Buddha used his words as a trap. Krishna used his flute as a trap.
Meera used her dance as a trap.
You have to be trapped. And you can only be trapped in ways that you Gan understand. You have to be taken from the known into the unknown, but the beginning has to be in the known.
You understand passion. The young man was not in search of God, but he became interested in a beautiful body, in a beautiful woman - and was trapped. He had gone there because of his passion.
Once he was there in the presence of Rabia, the passion started changing - it became prayer.
You can understand words, that's why all the Buddhas have used words, knowing perfectly well, saying again and again, that the truth cannot be expressed in words. But you understand words and the truth cannot be expressed in words, then how to communicate? The journey has to start from where you are. The Buddhas have to speak words. Words will bring you closer to the Buddhas; words will not give you truth, but they will bring you closer to the Buddhas. Once you are close to them, you will start forgetting the words; you will start falling into silence.
The words cannot express truth, but they can bring you close to a Buddha. And that is more than you can expect of poor words! That's why Buddhas go on saying on the one hand words are meaningless, on the other hand they go on using words.
They ARE meaningful for you - you don't know the language of silence, you don't know the language of being. You know only your mind; you have forgotten all else. If I am to bring you out of your mind, I will have to start from the mind, I will have to take your mind in confidence - then only the pilgrimage towards no-mind.....
The second question:
YOU HAVE SPOKEN ABOUT ART. YOU HAVE SAID THAT MOST OF IT IS ILL, THAT PICASSO'S PAINTINGS ARE ONLY MAD AND A THERAPY FOR HIM. I AGREE WITH YOU - BUT I ALSO KNOW THAT I LOVE THE AESTHETICS OF DECADENCE. I KNOW TOO THAT IT IS MY MIRROR OF MY ILLNESS - BUT I TOO BELIEVE THAT THERE EXISTS A LITTLE MORE AS WELL.
THIS LITTLE DIFFERENCE IS IMPORTANT. IN THE LITTLE DIFFERENCE, LIFE IS HIDDEN.
I LOVED YOU SPEAKING ABOUT AESTHETICS. DON'T YOU THINK THERE IS A BEAUTY IN THE LEAVES OF AUTUMN? DON'T YOU THINK THERE CAN ALSO BE AN ACCEPTANCE OF MADNESS? A SURRENDER AND KNOWING THAT ALL IS GOOD? THE SETTING SUN - WHAT COLOURS! DON'T YOU THINK THERE EXISTS A GLIMPSE OF THE UNKNOWN IN THE PAINTINGS OF PICASSO? DON'T YOU THINK THERE EXISTS A MADNESS WITHOUT CONSCIOUSNESS AND A MADNESS WITH CONSCIOUSNESS.?
IN REAL BEAUTY I FIND ALWAYS LIFE AND DEATH. FOR ME THIS PROBLEM IS NOT ABSTRACT - I LIVE IT. I LOVE A DYING VIOLET, The question is from Prem Ashok.
IT IS SIGNIFICANT to go into the aesthetics of life.
First thing: while listening to me, remember you are neither to agree with me nor to disagree with me. If you agree or disagree, you miss the point. Agreement, disagreement, is of the mind. When you say you agree with me, what are you saying? You are really saying, "I agree with you." You are saying, "Whatsoever you are saying is in tune with my own thinking." But if this is agreement, then I will not be able to transform you.
If you disagree with me, that is also the same: something is going against your prejudice, your idea, then you disagree. When something goes with your idea, you agree; when something goes against your idea, you disagree - but you remain there, agreeing, disagreeing. And in both ways, you will not be able to understand what I am making available to you.
You, please, forget about agreeing, disagreeing - this is not a philosophical discourse. I am not teaching you philosophy or aesthetics. I am simply opening my heart to you. You just listen! Don't be in a hurry to agree or disagree; don't go on agreeing, disagreeing while I am speaking to you; otherwise, your agreements, disagreements will become a barrier.
First listen. First get in tune with me! First fall in harmony with me. Let there arise an accord. Accord does not mean agreement. Accord simply means you are in love with me - not with what I say. You are simply in love with my being. My saying this or that is irrelevant.
First you fall in accord with me... and from THERE insights will start exploding in you. They will be transforming.
You say: YOU HAVE SPOKEN ABOUT ART. YOU HAVE SAID THAT MOST OF IT IS ILL, THAT PICASSO'S PAINTINGS ARE ONLY MAD AND A THERAPY FOR HIM. I AGREE WITH YOU...
You miss the point. It was not a statement to be agreed with or disagreed with. I was opening a door. I was not saying anything about Picasso; I was just illustrating a point; I was just giving you an example so that things could become more concrete. I was not condemning Picasso!
You say you agree with me? That means these were your ideas before you heard me, and you jumped upon them. You said, "Right! Osho, you are right because you agree with me. You must be right."
If you feel that way, you have protected yourself. You will remain the same; in fact, you have become more strong, you have strengthened yourself. Can't you avoid agreement, disagreement? It is difficult, because the mind is so accustomed to agreeing, disagreeing - immediately.
The moment you hear something, either you say yes or you say no. Can't you avoid saying yes and no? Can't you simply listen? There is no hurry to say yes or no. Let the thing SOAK into your being.
Drink it! Let it move into your bloodstream. Let it go into your very marrow. From THERE something will arise, sprout - and that will be new.
And for that new I am working here. Whatsoever I say is only a device. It has nothing absolute about it; it is arbitrary. And that's why with the agreement there is disagreement too.
You say: I AGREE WITH YOU - BUT I ALSO KNOW THAT I LOVE THE AESTHETICS OF DECADENCE.
The mind is very clever and diplomatic. It says: "On one point I agree with you; on another point I don't." But you remain the same! You have not changed a little bit. You have not even taken a single step towards me.
I KNOW TOO THAT IT IS MY MIRROR OF MY ILLNESS BUT...
And remember, those 'buts' are very very significant: those 'buts' are your diplomatic strategies. You are only half-heartedly saying:
I KNOW THAT IT IS MY MIRROR OF MY ILLNESS BUT I TOO BELIEVE THAT THERE EXISTS A LITTLE MORE AS WELL.
No, there exists nothing more.
THIS LITTLE DIFFERENCE IS IMPORTANT, YOU SAY. IN THE LITTLE DIFFERENCE LIFE IS HIDDEN. I LOVED YOU SPEAKING ABOUT AESTHETICS. DON'T YOU THINK THERE IS A BEAUTY IN THE LEAVES OF AUTUMN?
Yes, there is beauty in the leaves of autumn - but those leaves don't know that they are dying; those leaves don't know that they are decadent. Those leaves are STILL living! They have no fear of death. Those leaves are living their autumn! They have lived their spring, now they are living their autumn. Those leaves have lived their life, now they are living their death. And there is a great difference.
When you see autumn leaves, the idea of death arises in you, not in the leaves. The leaves are uncorrupted by any idea. They are in total suchness. Spring was good, so is autumn. And life was beautiful - those green days and the winds and the clouds... they were beautiful and so are these days! Leaves are drying and becoming pale and falling to the ground - and they are enjoying!
because they are going back to the source. It is from where they had come in the first place. They were born out of the earth, they played in the winds, they rose high in the sky, they had their day - now they are tired, now they want to be rejuvenated, they want to fall back into the womb. They are perfectly happy! There is no hitch, no complaint, no grudge, there is no fear, no apprehension.
Autumn leaves are not decadent. Nature knows NO decadence! Nature is ALWAYS alive, even in death. Nature knows no death. Death is a human invention. And why does man have to invent death? - because man has invented the ego. Death is a by-product of the ego. The MOMENT YOU say "I am," death has entered. The leaves have never said that they are - death cannot enter.
If you don't say "I am," how can you die? To die, first you have to be.
Just meditate over it. Don't agree and disagree with me! just meditate over it. If you DON'T say 'I', then where is the problem? You are not there. There is eternal silence... absolute emptiness, what Buddha calls SHUNYATA. Now, who is there to die? From where is decadence possible now?
That's why I repeat again: nature knows no death - because in death also there is life. Death is a phase of life, an inactive phase of life is death, a silent phase of life. Death is life relaxing. Death is life gone to sleep, to rest. Death is a pause - to rejuvenate oneself. Death is a cleansing. Death is a process of destroying the unnecessary and the unessential that gathers around oneself in the process of life. Death is an unburdening.
But, if you don't burden yourself, there is no death. If you unburden yourself, then there is no death.
If you don't have the idea that "I am separate from existence," how can you think that "I will die"? In the separation, behind the separation, comes the shadow of death.
Those leaves have never thought they are separate, so don't impose your ideas upon the autumn leaves. That is not fair.
You say: DON'T YOU THINK THERE IS A BEAUTY IN THE LEAVES OF AUTUMN?
There IS beauty! because there is no decadence. There IS beauty because there is no death. There IS beauty, because there is eternity.
DON'T YOU THINK THERE CAN ALSO BE AN ACCEPTANCE OF MADNESS?
I KNOW THERE CAN BE AN ACCEPTANCE OF MADNESS - but the moment you accept madness, you are no more mad. Madness exists only in its rejection. Have you ever found any madman who agrees that he is mad? Then go to a madhouse and ask all the mad people who are there - nobody will accept that he is mad. And if somebody accepts that he is mad, that means he is no more mad.
How can madness accept? Only wisdom can accept.
In accepting madness, the quality, the very quality of madness is transformed. You have brought a light and the darkness disappears.
Remember: madness exists only in rejection, and the more you reject, the more you will be mad.
The foolish man goes on rejecting his foolishness, and becomes more of a fool. The ugly man goes on rejecting his ugliness and becomes uglier. And the madman goes on rejecting his madness, and becomes more and more mad.
Accept... and ugliness disappears, grace arises. Accept... and sin is transformed into saintliness.
Accept... and madness is no more madness.
Acceptance is the alchemical process of transforming everything. Whatsoever is, accept it. From where does the rejection come? The rejection comes because of some idea in you of how things should be. You cannot accept your foolishness because you have this idea that you should be wise.
You cannot accept your madness because you have this idea that you should be sane. You cannot accept anything because you have the opposite idea.
In acceptance, all ideals have to be dropped. When you are not searching for wisdom, only then can you accept your foolishness. But in accepting foolishness, one becomes wise.
This is the secret. In accepting your ugliness, beauty arises. That's why you don't see an ugly tree, and you don't see an ugly animal, and you don't see an ugly bird. Why? Because there is no rejection. There is great acceptance. They live in suchness - tathata. Whosoever they are and whatsoever they are, they don't hanker for something else, they don't hanker to be otherwise - they are in tune with themselves. In that very harmoniousness is grace. Grace is a quality that comes when you accept life as it is - and grace is beauty.
I know madness can be accepted, but mad people don't accept it. If they accept, they will become enlightened.
Have you accepted things that you find in yourself? or do you go on rejecting them? do you go on hiding them? do you go on covering them? do you pretend to be somebody else that you are not?
Have you accepted yourself as you are? Are you ready to expose yourself as you are? in your utter nudity? If you are not ready then you are also mad. Sooner or later you will accumulate so much rejection and so much madness that you will not be able to control it.
Civilization drives people mad because civilization forces ideals on people's minds. Man is the only animal on earth who goes mad, because only man has perfectionist ideas. A dog is simply a dog; and perfectly happy with being a dog. And no dog is trying to become a super-dog. But man, EVERY man, is trying to become a superman hence the madness.
And you say:... A SURRENDER END KNOWING THAT ALL IS GOOD?
When you say "all is good," all is not good, something is wrong. This is again covering. When you say "all is good," it is a consolation. If all is good, there is no need to say anything about it. If all is good, all IS good - saying betrays you. You only say all is good when you know that all is not good.
Whom are you trying to befool? You are trying to befool yourself. You are trying to create a kind of auto-hypnosis by saying all is good. You are following Emile Coue. You know you are ill, but you go on saying, "I am not ill. Who says I am ill? I am perfectly happy and perfectly okay." And you know all the time. In fact, because you know you are ill, that's why you are repeating this.
Coue was teaching - he had a great following once - to go on repeating, "Every day, in every way, I am getting better and better. I am healthy, I am wise, I am beautiful." But when you say "I am wise,"
what exactly are you saying? If YOU ARE wise, then what is the point? Deep down you know you are not. Because you know you are not, you are trying to become wise by saying it, by imposing it.
When somebody says, "All is good," look into his eyes and you will find something is gnawing his heart, something is disturbing him. He does not want to get disturbed; he wants to pretend all is good. These pretensions won't help.
ALL IS CERTAINLY good! but there is no need to say it.
Lao Tzu has said: There was a time when people were religious, but then there was no religion.
Then came religion, and people became irreligious.
A strange statement, but of great significance and of great profundity, and great truth is contained in it. When people are moral, they are oblivious of the fact. When people are really healthy, they are not aware of it. Have you not watched it, healthy people? Healthy people are NOT aware of it.
Healthy people don't read literature on naturopathy. Healthy people are simply oblivious of the body.
In the ancient Indian scriptures, health is defined as 'bodilessness'. I have never come across a better definition. One should be unaware of the body, then one is healthy. But you go on thinking about your illnesses, and you go on reading about health, nature foods, naturopathy - and there are a thousand and one fads around the world. And the more you read these things, the more ill you will be, and the more unnatural you will be, because the more conscious you will become.
I have seen people who are in search of health - they are continuously conscious of it. Just a little movement of the wind in their stomachs and they are there. Just a little heaviness in the head and they are there. Just a little pain somewhere and they are there. Now, the body is a complex and big mechanism; a thousand and one things are going on. If you are continuously looking inside you will go mad.
Just try it for twenty-four hours, just go on looking inside at what is happening there - blood is circulating or not? the intestine is working or not? the stomach is digesting or not? Just look inside your body, and within twenty-four hours you will be as ill as one can be. Twenty-four hours' work, and you will be on the bed....
The body, when healthy, remains in darkness. There is no need even to think about it. Healthy roots remain underneath the earth in darkness. All that is healthy remains unaware.
In Sanskrit, we have a word VEDANA. It has two meanings, very strange meanings; one meaning is knowledge, the other meaning is suffering. Knowledge is suffering. One word has two meanings:
knowledge and suffering. You know only when you suffer. You know about your head only when there is a headache. When the headache is gone, the head too is gone.
Now, Ashok, you say: DON'T YOU THINK THERE CAN ALSO BE AN ACCEPTANCE OF MADNESS? A SURRENDER AND KNOWING THAT ALL IS GOOD?
Yes, there is, but it is not a consolation. It is not even a statement. One lives in it. It is an existential experience.
But I would like you to remember that Picasso had not accepted his madness. If he had accepted it, his paintings would have changed. If he had accepted it, he would have become a Buddha.
Nietzsche did not accept his madness. If he had accepted there would have been a great change, mutation; he would not have died mad.
Van Gogh did not accept his madness; if he HAD accepted he would not have committed suicide.
Now, Van Gogh committing suicide at the age of thirty-three, so young... life was still ahead. And Van Gogh committing suicide simply shows what kind of paintings he was doing - they are suicidal.
Before he committed suicide he became mad; for one year he was continuously mad. In fact, his best paintings are those that he painted in his madness. They ARE bizarre, they are overflowing neurosis; they depict, they mirror a madman's mind. He painted even that day when he committed suicide; even in that painting there is the shadow of suicide. He must have been brooding, he must have been thinking... he was continuously thinking about suicide! He had not even accepted life - how could he accept death? But he was a genius; about that there is no doubt.
Picasso is a genius. But to be a genius is not necessarily to be a wise man. A genius can be mad.
A genius can be a wise man. Buddha is also a genius, but one who has awakened to his innermost core. Van Gogh is also a genius, but lives in absolute mechanicalness. Even without being sane he has painted so beautifully - had he been sane, you can imagine what his creation would have been.
That would have been a great gift to the world. The world has missed something beautiful.
You say: THE SETTING SUN - WHAT COLOURS!
BUT DO YOU KNOW? THE SUN NEVER SETS. It is only setting for you. It is rising somewhere else. The sun knows NO setting. It is always rising, it is continuously rising - each moment is a new birth. For you, it looks like the sun is setting; but for the sun, it is always rising and rising and rising.
It is eternal rising.
And so is the vision of an enlightened man. Life knows no death. Life has never known death. The sun never sets. Even if this sun dies, it will be born somewhere else again. Every star melts as surely as every snowflake, only to be born in another time, another place. Nothing ever dies. Death is improbable, impossible. Death exists not.
It is in your mind, Ashok. The sunset is beautiful - because it is another rise, it is another kind of morning. Have you not seen old trees, how beautiful they are? - because they don't know of oldness. In their ancientness, they have such beauty. It rarely happens with man that an old man is beautiful, but whenever it happens you can be certain that man has lived his life to the full.
A Rabindranath becomes more and more beautiful as he become old, as his hair starts turning grey and white, as his body starts turning older and older. He attains to a new quality of beauty - which no young man can have. Youth has its own beauty, but it is shallow; it can't have depth. It is more of the physical and less of the spiritual. It is more of the body; it can't have much profundity.
Youth has not lived yet to be so profound. An old man, a Rabindranath, who has lived life - its joys, its sadnesses, its blessings, its curses, its days, its dark nights - who has seen life in its variety and richness, who has suffered and who has been blessed, naturally becomes profound, naturally gains depth. In his old age, you can see a kind of luminosity, something like a flame inside, very deep, filtering through; the rays come outside too. With his white hair and old age, he looks like Everest - that white hair has become like ancient virgin snow on the Himalayan peak.
If a man lives his life totally, is not afraid to live, he will become every day more and more beautiful.
The child has a kind of beauty, youth has another kind of beauty, old age has another kind of beauty - and death is also beautiful. But ONLY if you have lived, otherwise death is very ugly - because life has been ugly, how can death be beautiful? Death is simply the last statement, the testament: your whole life is condensed in that last statement.
A man who has not lived rightly, or who has lived half-heartedly, will not be able to relax in death - he will cling to life. He will shout deep in his heart, "Give me a little time more! Don't take me away - I have not lived yet! I am not yet ripe! I have missed opportunities. A little more opportunity I need."
There will be great longing and there will be great sadness. The man is not ripe. He will hold on to the shore: he will try hard to be here. He will cling, and that clinging will create his ugliness.
When a man has lived, loved, meditated, danced, prayed, and has done all kinds of things, whatsoever... has moved in all kinds of desires, has not left anything unexperienced; has lived in sin and saint-hood, has gone to the deepest darkness and has arisen to the highest sunlit peak, has moved freely and wildly... a man whose whole commitment was with life and there was NO other commitment; a man who has not sacrificed his life for some stupid idea: God, heaven, motherland, religion, politics, communism, socialism; a man who has not sacrificed his life for anything... because life is so valuable that it cannot be sacrificed for anything else. Everything else can be sacrificed to life - life to none. Life is God! A man who has lived life with reverence, with totality, will be able to relax. When death comes he will simply relax, as the child relaxes in his mother's lap. He will close his eyes, he will say goodbye - his statement will be that of fulfillment, gratitude. There will be a prayer on his lips that "I am thankful. All that happened was incredible. I was not worthy of it, but you made me worthy. I had not earned it, but you went on pouring your grace. I cannot pay it back." He will die in deep gratitude, and there will be grace and there will be joy. And there will be that luminosity which always comes with fulfillment. He is dying a ripe man, mature, wise. Life has made him wise.
But... this is not the setting of a sun. He is simply going into rest, will rise again. Every star melts as surely as every snowflake, only to be born in another time, another place.
You say: THE SETTING SUN - WHAT COLOURS! DON'T YOU THINK THERE EXISTS A GLIMPSE OF THE UNKNOWN IN THE PAINTINGS OF PICASSO?
Yes, it is there, but it is a very perverted glimpse. It is there! distorted - because Picasso's mirror is distorted. It is like a mirror broken in a thousand pieces and you have somehow put it together, and it reflects - that reflection is a distorted reflection.
Buddha is one piece. He also reflects the same reality, but because he is one piece, he is no more in fragments, he is integrated, he has become a silent pool of energy, a reservoir with no ripples, with no thoughts, with NO madness... because mind is madness. And Buddha exists without mind - there is no possibility of any madness. Only the mind can go mad!
It is the SAME reality that is reflected in a madman and in a wise man, but the difference is in the mirrors, not in the reality. When I see the trees and you see the trees, the trees are the same - but there is a great difference. If your mirror is broken, if your mirror is covered with dust, layers of dust, of ancient dust of many many lives, your reflection cannot be true to reality, it cannot be of suchness.
Yes, there is a glimpse, EVEN in Picasso, but that glimpse could have been far truer to reality. If Picasso had known something of meditation, if he had known how to drop his continuous thought process, how to drop his mind... the West has forgotten the ways.
And you say: DON'T YOU THINK THERE EXISTS A MADNESS WITHOUT CONSCIOUSNESS AND A MADNESS WITH CONSCIOUSNESS?
I have never heard of a madness with consciousness. All madness is without consciousness. To be conscious and mad is impossible. It is as impossible as it is to have light in the room and darkness too. When the room is lighted, you cannot bring darkness in the room. When you bring light in, darkness is no more.
So is consciousness - consciousness is light, it is a flame, it is a fire. Madness is like darkness. It exists only in an unconscious being.
That's why I say if Picasso had known something of meditation, he would have been benefited immensely and the world would have been benefited immensely too. His creation would have been a great blessing. Right now, as it is, it is simply a statement of madness and nothing else.
And, finally, you say: IN REAL BEAUTY I FIND ALWAYS LIFE AND DEATH.
In real beauty there is neither life nor death - there is eternity. Life and death are our ideas. We go on imposing.... If man disappears from the earth, life and death will both disappear. Trees will live and die, but there will be no life and no death. Birds will sing and one day fall and disappear - there will be life and death, but no idea of life and death. Ideas are all man-made.
And beauty is only when you have pushed aside all man-made ideas. Beauty is eternal - it is beyond life and death. Truth is eternal; it is beyond life and death. Beauty is truth: truth is beauty.
IN REAL BEAUTY I FIND ALWAYS LIFE AND DEATH.
And what do you mean by 'real beauty'? Have you ever seen unreal beauty too? BEAUTY IS REALITY!
There is no unreal beauty. But we go on making distinctions because the mind cannot allow you to see the distinctionless. Everywhere it will make distinctions - real and unreal, good and bad, moral and immoral, holy and unholy, material and spiritual. The mind goes on making distinctions because the mind cannot see the distinctionless - and that which is is distinctionless.
FOR ME THIS PROBLEM IS NOT ABSTRACT - I LIVE IT.
Nobody can live a problem! And if you live a problem, you will be mad. You can live a mystery, not a problem. A problem necessarily goads you for its solution. What is a problem? A problem is something that you cannot leave as it is; it has to be solved. You cannot live a problem! And the problem will not allow you to LIVE at all, unless you solve it. And you have so many problems, and they all clamour for their solution, and they all destroy your life.
Mysteries can be lived. What is the difference between a mystery and a problem? A problem can be solved, a mystery cannot be solved, a mystery is insoluble. A mystery is not a question, and there is no answer for it. You have simply to live it. You have to trust it.
Mind creates problems out of the mystery because the mind cannot trust. Mind is doubt. It goes on putting 'why?' - it goes on creating the question mark everywhere.
Why is the rose beautiful? Now it has become a problem; it has to be solved - why? Some answer has to be found. The beauty of the rose is a mystery - there is no answer. It is simply there. There is no why to it. So is love. So are people. So is music. So is silence. So are the stars and the seas and the mountains... so is this whole.
If you make problems out of it, you will create philosophy. If you don't make any problem out of existence, religion is born in you. Religion knows no problems and no answers. Religion lives life like a child - in absolute awe, wonder, in reverence. In fact, to ask a question is to be irreverent.
The question is the beginning of the murder of the mystery. The question is the beginning of demystification.
That's what science has been continuously doing - demystifying. It cannot succeed! It has failed utterly, but it goes on trying. The more it fails, the more madly it tries. The whole effort behind science is: how to demystify existence; how to know every answer for every question - how to make man knowledgeable. If science succeeds, then there will come one day when all questions have been answered. Just think of it! Beyond that will be sheer boredom.
Just think of it! - a day when all questions have been solved, mysteries dissolved, you know every answer. You can go and consult a computer or an encyclopedia; or you can ask the expert but all questions are solved, there are no more questions left. That will be the day of utter doom. There will be sheer boredom beyond that. Then there cannot be any joy.
Knowledge kills joy - knowledge is a killjoy. Religion does not trust in knowledge. Religion trusts in ignorance - because ignorance is innocent.
You say: FOR ME THIS PROBLEM is NOT ABSTRACT...
Problems as such are always abstract. You cannot live a problem: you can live only a mystery. But for that you will have to drop all problems.
I LOVE A DYING VIOLET.
But why? Why can't you love just a violet? Why does it need to die? Why can't you just love a violet?
Why 'dying'? Somehow you must be suicidal. Somehow you are death-oriented. Somehow you are destructive. Somehow you enjoy only sadness.
And again, let me repeat: the violet is not dying; the violet is only reborn. It is only in your mind that the violet is dying. But you enjoy death. There is something obsessive in you. It may be just because you are incapable of enjoying life - you have created a substitute: you enjoy death.
I am NOT against enjoying death, but I would like to say to you: if you CANNOT enjoy life, you cannot enjoy death - because death is the culmination, death is the crescendo. Death is the LAST touch, the finishing touch.... Death is not against life: it is life's greatest peak.
The third question:
HOW TO KNOW WHEN IT IS APPROPRIATE TO END A LOVE RELATIONSHIP?
HOW CAN ONE GO DEEP WITH A PERSON WHEN HE IS AFRAID?
MANTRA, RELATIONSHIP AND LOVE ARE TOTALLY different things. Love is never a relationship, and relationship is never love. Love relates, but it is not a relationship. Relationship is a dead thing, a closed thing. Love is a flowing.
You ask me: HOW TO KNOW WHEN IT IS APPROPRIATE TO END A LOVE RELATIONSHIP?
So the first thing to be reminded of: love is never a relationship. Then something else is masquerading as love. Maybe you are searching for a husband or a wife - you are searching for some security, you are searching for some structure. A structured life is a murdered life.
There is a fixation in the human mind for structures, because in a structured life one feels secure, one knows where one is, one knows where one stands in relationship to the other. It seems that because man is born in the womb of the mother and for nine months remains in a structure, that continues deep down in the psyche - and man is always trying to find a structure somewhere.
If he loves, he wants to make a relationship out of it immediately! He wants to get married. He wants to create a certain conditioning. He wants to make it a contract. Or he enters a church, or he enters a political party, or he enters into ANY club and he wants to be structured, he wants to know where he stands in the hierarchy, in what relationship. He wants to have an identity - that "I am this." He does not want to remain uncertain.
And life is uncertain. Only death is certain.
Remember: in your whole life, once you have taken birth, only death is certain and everything else is uncertain. Uncertainty is the very core of life. Insecurity is its very spirit.
But we are always hankering for a structure.
Relationship is a structure, and love is unstructured. So love relates, certainly, but never becomes a relationship. Love is a moment-to-moment process. Remember it. Love is a state of your being, not a relationship. There are loving people and there are unloving people. Unloving people pretend to be loving through the relationship. Loving people need not have any relationship - love is enough.
Be a loving person rather than in a love relationship - because relationships happen one day and disappear another day. They are flowers; in the morning they bloom, by the evening they are gone.
You be a loving person, Mantra.
But people find it very difficult to be a loving person, so they create a relationship - and befool that way that "Now I am a loving person because I am in a relationship." And the relationship may be just one of monopoly, possessiveness, exclusiveness.
Relationship may be just out of fear, may not have anything to do with love. Relationship may be just a kind of security - financial or something else. The relationship is needed only because love is not there. Relationship is a substitute.
Become alert! Relationship destroys love, destroys the very possibility of its birth. One thing.
Second thing. You say:
HOW TO KNOW WHEN IT IS APPROPRIATE TO END A LOVE RELATIONSHIP?
As far as I know, Mantra is still alone. As far as I know, it will be very difficult for her to move in love - that's what my feeling is about her. Whenever I have looked into her eyes, I have found a very stony heart. In fact, the relationship has not even started and she is asking how to end it. Clever mind.
Wants to have everything clear. Even before it has started, you want to be certain how to end it.
Fear of going into love is such that one wants to be perfectly alert and capable so that if things are too much and one needs to get out, one knows when and how to know when it is time to get out.
And Mantra has not yet entered into love and she is asking how to end it! She wants to know every possibility beforehand. She wants to go into it prepared - and nobody can go prepared into a love relationship.
Nobody can go prepared. When you are too much prepared, that very preparedness prevents. Love has to happen! When it happens it is almost from the unknown. It comes... surrounds you... drives you crazy... into unknown directions... into unknown dimensions. It takes you away. It IS ALWAYS a surprise. You cannot plan for it. The more you plan for it, the less is the possibility of its happening.
And that's what Mantra is doing - planning, thinking about it, brooding, preparing. And now this is the last thing that one can ask: HOW TO KNOW WHEN IT IS APPROPRIATE TO END A LOVE RELATIONSHIP? It has not even started! The marriage has not happened and you have gone to the lawyer to ask about divorce.
And third thing: love happens on its own and ends on its own. You need not be worried about it.
YOU CANNOT MAKE it happen and you cannot end it. It is beyond you. It is far bigger than you.
Your ego is not capable of controlling it. And this is why Mantra is not moving into love energy, and is completely unaware of what it is. She keeps herself in control. She is a disciplined lady. If she had been around in the old days she would have been appreciated very much - she is a lady. Now she has fallen in wrong company here. This place is not for ladies and gentlemen. For ladies and gentlemen there are other places - cemeteries. This place is for people who are alive - for men, for women, certainly, but not for ladies and gentlemen.
A lady is such a diluted woman - it is worthless. A gentleman is no more a man at all - that's why he is called 'gentleman'. He has lost all energy; he is lukewarm, he has no fire any more, no passion.
His fire has gone out. He is mannerly, he knows all about etiquette, but he is dead.
One cannot start love. It is not like a switch that you put on and off. You can only make yourself available: when it happens, it happens. It always comes from the blue - and like a jolt it comes.
And it shakes you and uproots you - it is an earthquake. The ground beneath your feet disappears.
Suddenly you are.falling into a bottomless abyss.
That's why love has been called 'falling in love'. You lose balance. You are no more yourself. You are drunk. You walk like a drunkard. The control, the discipline, can't exist with love. You cannot begin it - how can you end it?
Sometimes it happens: love has ended and you can go on living with the man or the woman, but love has ended. Sometimes the opposite also happens: the woman has died, but love continues; the man has died, but love continues. The ways of love are very mysterious.
You can go on living with the woman and the man, and you can go on reproducing children, and love is not there. Or, the woman has left you, has gone with somebody else; for her, love has taken a different route - but you go on crying for her, you go on feeling for her; your heart still spins and weaves for her. Your heart still sings and dances for her.
Or the woman is dead and there is no possibility of meeting her again, but still it continues.
Love's ways are beyond you. It is not possible for you to know when it is appropriate. Love is such a dangerous thing - you cannot know the appropriate time to begin it, and you cannot find the appropriate time to stop it. It happens in inappropriate times - when you were not even waiting, not thinking, and even when you feel embarrassed. But the God of love takes possession of you.
If you want to start it and end it according to you, then it will not be love. It will be something plastic, synthetic.
HOW TO KNOW WHEN IT IS APPROPRIATE TO END A LOVE RELATIONSHIP?
HOW CAN ONE GO DEEP WITH A PERSON WHEN HE IS AFRAID?
That's HIS problem that he is afraid. You need not be worried about it. Never ask about problems which are not yours.
Now, if you choose a person who is afraid, that simply means you have some problem deep down, that's why you choose a person who is afraid. Maybe you are afraid and you don't want to go with a courageous person, because then he will take you into unknown territories. So you manage a relationship.
Remember: only relationships can be managed. You manage a relationship with a coward. You know that he will not go very far; you know that "He is more of a coward than me." You know that he will become a hen-pecked husband, that "He will follow me like a shadow." Now this is a problem, a dilemma.
Nobody, not even the wife, loves the hen-pecked husband, cannot - because love always longs for something great. Love always longs for the divine. Now the hen-pecked husband looks so ugly, so unloving, unworthy of love. Even the wife cannot love him.
A woman who is just a slave to you, how can you love her? Love happens amongst friends, not between masters and slaves. You cannot love a woman who is a slave. You can order her, but you cannot love her; you can use her but you cannot love her. It will be a kind of prostitution, it cannot be love. One loves only equals.
So, Mantra, I don't know about whom you are asking, but that is his problem. He should come to me; he can inquire. But one thing is certain about you: if you fall with a man who is afraid of going into depth, then really you are afraid of going into depth - that's why you have chosen the man.
We always choose the person according to our innermost characteristics. We always fall in love with a person because our mind only allows that.
I have heard about a man who divorced eight times, and again and again was surprised that he always found the same type of woman. And eight times he tried - he tried hard! What more can you do? After each one or two years, he divorced the woman, started looking, and was very alert that he should never fall in the same trap, but again, after six months, eight months, he would find a woman.... For a few days things would go okay... and then the same rut, and he would see that he had again found the same type of woman.
After eight marriages he became aware of the fact that "The real problem is with my type. Only THESE women appeal to me, and unless I change my type, just changing the woman is not going to help."
You have a certain type of mind; for that mind a certain type of man or woman looks appealing. And you will find him or her again and again - unless you change.
You ask: HOW CAN ONE GO DEEP WITH A PERSON WHEN HE IS AFRAID?
Why did you choose this man? You can choose the dangerous kind - if you want to go really deep.
And EVERYBODY IS afraid of going deep - because in depth is death, because every depth relaxes you so much that it looks like death. Every depth takes you out of the ego. That's why people are afraid of love. They hanker for relationship, but they are afraid of love.
And a love which is open-ended creates more fear - because one never knows where it is going to land you. To remain open-ended, to remain in love without creating a relationship, takes real courage. And if you have that courage, love will come in a thousand and one ways, will sing a thousand and one songs in your heart, will dance in a thousand and one ways in your being.
The last question:
WHY CAN'T I FOLLOW SOMEONE WHO KNOWS? WHAT IS THE NEED TO SEARCH FOR TRUTH MYSELF?
HOW ARE YOU GOING TO KNOW THAT THE OTHER KNOWS? It will be just a belief. How are you going to know that the other has known the truth? You don't have any experience. The other may be deceiving - or may himself be deceived. The other may be mad or may be cunning. How are you going to decide that the other has REALLY known? There is no way.
Out of fear you can follow the other, but you will be following blindly. And who knows? The one you are following may be blind himself; he may be following somebody else. That's how things are.
That's how priests go on following each other. Nobody knows when the man with the eyes was there.
For example, Jesus was the man with eyes, but then the Christian priests during these two thousand years have been following each other... a long line of blind people. The blind leading the blind.
You ask: WHY CAN'T I FOLLOW SOMEONE WHO KNOWS?
And EVEN if someone knows for the argument's sake, let us accept that someone knows even then he cannot transfer his truth to you. He can only indicate the way; you will have to go on the way. He can only give you a prescription; you will have to follow the prescription, you will have to DO things.
Truth cannot be transferred - you will have to arrive at it on your own.
WHAT IS THE NEED TO SEARCH FOR TRUTH MYSELF?
Because without truth life is meaningless. Because truth is always individual; it is not a collective phenomenon. Truth does not belong to the crowd. Each one has to come to it on his own.
Remember, borrowed knowledge is not going to help. It may even be that the man you borrowed your knowledge from was a real knower, but the moment the knowledge comes to you it is borrowed - and borrowed knowledge is always false. The source may have been true but the moment it comes into you, you are untrue, it becomes untrue.
For the truth to exist in you, you will have to become true yourself. One has to go into one's own being to find the truth.
And without truth there is no joy. And without truth there ;s no significance. And without truth you live in vain.
Two tramps were talking. One, who was skinny and starved, said, "Hey, how come you always look so well-fed and never seem to go hungry?"
The second said, "I've got me this system. I get some horse manure off the road, go up to one of the great big fine houses, knock on the door, and ask for a bit of salt and pepper to put on it. Of course, the people always say, 'You can't eat that! Come on inside for a decent meal.' Or they give me a few rupees and I go eat at a cafe."
So the skinny tramp thought he'd give it a try. He found some really, really old manure, knocked on the door of the biggest house on the street, and said, "Excuse me, lady, could you spare me a pinch of salt and pepper for my bit of food here?"
"You can't eat that, you poor man!" said the woman.
"It's working," thought the tramp, pleased with himself.
"No, you can't eat that," repeated the woman, "you'll be ill! Go round to the stables and get yourself a fresh bit!"