Symphony For A Seabird
YOU CANNOT PUT A BIG LOAD IN A SMALL BAG, NOR CAN YOU, WITH A SHORT ROPE, DRAW WATER FROM A DEEP WELL.
HAVE YOU NOT HEARD HOW A BIRD FROM THE SEA WAS BLOWN INSHORE AND LANDED OUTSIDE THE CAPITAL OF LU?
THE PRINCE ORDERED A SOLEMN RECEPTION, OFFERED THE SEA BIRD WINE IN THE SACRED PRECINCT, CALLED FOR MUSICIANS TO PLAY THE COMPOSITIONS OF SHUN, SLAUGHTERED CATTLE TO NOURISH IT. DAZED WITH SYMPHONIES, THE UNHAPPY SEA BIRD DIED OF DESPAIR.
HOW SHOULD YOU TREAT A BIRD? AS YOURSELF, OR AS A BIRD? OUGHT NOT A BIRD TO NEST IN DEEP WOODLAND OR FLY OVER MEADOW AND MARSH? OUGHT IT NOT TO SWIM ON RIVER AND POND, FEED ON EELS AND FISH, FLY IN FORMATION WITH OTHER WATERFOWL, AND REST IN, THE REEDS?
BAD ENOUGH FOR A SEA BIRD TO BE SURROUNDED BY MEN AND FRIGHTENED BY THEIR VOICES! THAT WAS NOT ENOUGH! THEY KILLED IT WITH MUSIC!
WATER IS FOR FISH, AND AIR FOR MEN. NATURES DIFFER, AND NEEDS WITH THEM.
HENCE THE WISE MEN OF OLD DID NOT LAY DOWN ONE MEASURE FOR ALL.
There is no human nature as such - there are human natures. Each individual is a universe unto himself, you cannot make any general rules. All general rules go false. This has to be remembered very deeply, because on this path there is every possibility that you may start following rules, and once you become the victim of rules you will never come to know who you are.
You can know yourself only in total freedom - and rules are prisons. They are prisons because no-one else can make rules for you; he may have discovered the truth through these rules, but they were for him. Nature differs - they helped him but they will not help you; on the contrary, they will hinder you.
So let understanding be the only rule.
Learn, grow in understanding, but don't follow rules. Rules are dead, understanding is alive; rules will become an imprisonment, understanding will give you the infinite sky. And every man is burdened with rules, every religion becomes nothing but rules. Because Jesus attained, because Buddha attained, their life became a rule for everybody else to follow. But nobody else is a Gautam Buddha; nobody else is a Jesus Christ. So at the most you can become a decorated carbon copy, but you will never be your authentic self. If you follow Jesus too much you will become a Christian but never a Christ, and that is the danger. To become a Christian and to miss Christ is not worth it. You can become Christ, but then Jesus cannot be your rule, only your own understanding will be the law.
Jesus followed nobody. He had a master, John the Baptist, but he never followed any rule. He felt the master, he remained with the master, he looked at the flame of the master, he absorbed the master, he was baptised by the master, but he never followed any rules. Other followers of John went against Jesus. They said: This man has betrayed you. He is going on his own, he is not following the rules strictly. No man of understanding can follow rules strictly. Only people who are dead can follow rules strictly because no rule is for you, you are your own rule. Understand, learn from others, just to find your own rule, but remember, never impose that rule on anybody else - that is violence. Your so-called mahatmas go on enforcing rules on others because through rules they kill and destroy, and they enjoy violence. Their violence is very subtle, they don't kill you directly, they kill you very indirectly. If somebody attacks you directly you can defend yourself. When somebody attacks you indirectly - for your own sake - you become completely a victim, you cannot even defend yourself.
Many gurus are nothing but violence, but their violence is subtle. So whenever you come near a man who wants to impose his rules on your life, wants to give you a fixed frame, wants to give you a window to look at the truth through, escape from him. There is danger. A real master will not give you a window to look at the truth through, he will bring you out under the sky. He will not give you a pattern to live by, he will simply give you the feeling, the understanding, and understanding will help you to move; understanding is free and your own.
Remember.... Because you don't want to understand, because understanding is difficult and arduous, because understanding needs courage and understanding needs transformation, you simply become victims of those who want to give you rules. But rules are substitutes, you can get them easily. You can easily make your life a disciplined life but this will be a false thing. You may be acting, pretending, but this cannot be real.
There is a Jewish story I would like to tell you. Jesus must have heard it because it is older than Jesus and everybody knew the story in those days. He must have heard it from his mother, Mary, or from his father, Joseph. The story is beautiful, you may also have heard it.
The story is this. A so-called wise man, almost a rabbi... I say almost because although he was a rabbi, to be a real rabbi is difficult. To be a real rabbi means you are enlightened. In fact he was just a priest, he had not known anything. But people knew about him, that he was a wise man....
was coming back from a nearby village to his home. As he was passing, he saw a man carrying a beautiful bird. He purchased the bird and started thinking to himself: Back home I am going to eat this bird, this bird is beautiful. Suddenly the bird said: Don't think such thoughts! The rabbi became scared, he said: What, have I heard you speak? The bird said: Yes, and I am no ordinary bird. I am also almost a rabbi in the world of birds. And I can give you three pieces of advice if you promise to release me and make me free. The rabbi said to himself: This bird speaks. He must be someone who knows.
This is how we decide - if somebody can speak he must know! Speaking is so easy, knowing is so difficult - they are not related to each other at all. You can speak without knowing, you can know without speaking. There is no relationship. But to us a speaker becomes a knower.
The rabbi said: Okay, you give me three pieces of advice and I will set you free. Said the bird: First piece of advice - never believe in any absurdity, whosoever should be saying it. It may be a great man, renowned all over the world, with prestige, power, authority - but if he is saying something absurd don't believe it. The rabbi said: Right! The bird said: This is my second piece of advice - whatsoever you do, never try the impossible, because then you will be a failure. So always know your limit: one who knows his limitations is wise, one who goes beyond his limit becomes a fool.
The rabbi nodded and said: Right! 'And,' said the bird, 'this is my third piece of advice - if you do something good never repent, only repent that which is bad.'
The advice was wonderful, beautiful, so the bird was set free. Happy, the rabbi started walking towards his home and he thought in his mind: Good material for a sermon. In the synagogue next week when I am going to speak I will give these three pieces of advice. And I am going to write them on the wall of my house and I will write them on my desk so I can remember them. These three rules can change a man.
Then, suddenly, he saw the bird sitting on a tree and the bird started laughing so loudly that the rabbi said: What is the matter? The bird said: You fool, I have got a very precious diamond in my belly. Had you killed me you would have become the richest man in the world. The rabbi repented in his heart: Really I am foolish. What have I done, I believed this bird.
He threw down the books that he was carrying and started climbing the tree. He was an old man and he had never climbed a tree in his life. And the higher he climbed, the higher the bird would fly to another branch. Finally the bird reached the very top and the old rabbi also - and then the bird flew away. Just at the moment when he was going to catch the bird, it flew. He missed his step and fell down from the tree; blood began to flow both legs were fractured, he was almost dead.
The bird came again to a lower branch and said: Now, first you believed me, that a bird can have a precious diamond in his belly. You fool! Have you ever heard such an absurdity! And then you tried the impossible - you have never climbed a tree. And when a bird is free, how can you catch him with bare hands, you fool? And you repented in your heart, feeling that you had done wrong when you had done a good deed, you had made a bird free! Now go home and write your rules and next week go to the synagogue and preach them.
But this is what all preachers are doing. Understanding is lacking, they only carry rules - rules are dead things. Understanding has no weight, you need not carry it - it carries you, it becomes your wings. It is not a weight at all, you need not even remember it If you understand a thing you need not remember it, it becomes your blood, your bones, it is you. Whatsoever you do will be done through that understanding; it is an unconscious phenomenon.
Rules are conscious, understanding is unconscious, and Chuang Tzu is always in favour of the unconscious. The whole tradition of Tao is for the unconscious. Don't force rules, just try to understand things. If you force rules upon yourself you will not become enlightened, you will remain ignorant inside, just decorated from without.
Jesus used to say: I look at you and I feel that you are like graves, white-washed - inside dead, outside a white-washed wall. It may look beautiful and clean, all your rules can give you an outer cleanliness, but inside you remain the old fool. And remember, only fools follow rules; a wise man tries to understand and forget the rules. A wise man is free to move; a man who has rules cannot move, he always has to follow the rule. And life changes every moment - from moment to moment, it goes on changing, it does not wait for you or your rules. Every moment is new. And if the rule is old, you will always miss your step and you will always be a misfit. Whenever there is a man who follows rules he will always be a misfit everywhere, because life goes on flowing and you are stuck with the rule.
As I see within you, you are all stuck with rules. In your childhood, rules were given to you and you are stuck there. Since then you have never moved. You may have been jogging on the same spot but you have not moved. You may become old - seventy years old - but deep down you remain stuck. The whole effort towards enlightenment is how to get unstuck, how to move, how to become a flow again and not be frozen. Don't be like ice - frozen; become like water, a river - flowing. Rules will never allow you that. Remember that life goes on renewing itself and only understanding can respond.
Mulla Nasrudin was always talking in negative terms so I told him. Be more positive. Why look at life with such negative eye? Then you will find only thorns and no flowers. So he said: Okay, now I will make it a rule to be positive always.
The next day his wife went shopping in the market and she told him to look after the children. When she came back she immediately felt that something had gone wrong. The whole house was sad, children were not running here and there - no noise. She became apprehensive. And then she looked at Nasrudin who was sitting at the door and immediately she felt that something really had gone wrong.
Afraid she said: Nasrudin, don't tell me anything bad, just tell me the good news. Nasrudin said: I have taken a vow not to be negative at all so you need not remind me. You know our seven children - six of them didn't fall under a bus!
This is how he had become positive.
You can change the words, but deep down you remain the same. You can change the behaviour, but deep down you remain the same. The real thing is how to change your being - not your behaviour, not your words, not your clothes - how to change your being. A man of rules changes himself on the periphery. A man of understanding changes himself, then the periphery changes automatically.
When the centre changes, the periphery changes automatically, it has to change. But when the periphery changes there is no necessity for the centre to change with it.
What can rules do? They can tell you what to do and what not to do, but they cannot change you, they can only change your actions, and actions are not you. Actions come from you, but you are deeper than your actions. Rules can change your behaviour - behaviour means your relationship with others - but they cannot change you. Only in your total aloneness are you your being, not in relationship.
And then Chuang Tzu says that natures differ.
One man came to me. He had been doing SIRSHASANA - a yoga posture, standing on his head, the head stand posture. It is written in the books that it is very beneficial and because it is very beneficial he had been doing it for very long periods. Now he was in such an inner turmoil that he was almost going mad. So he asked me what had gone wrong. He was a man of rules, he followed Patanjali word for word: diet, sleep time, exactly as they should be, he was a very 'regularised' man. So he could not think what had gone wrong. I asked him to tell me his whole routine. He did SIRSHASANA for one hour in the morning, and one hour at night. And he was waiting, expecting that at any moment enlightenment would happen. It had not happened, rather he was going mad, he was crazy.
SIRSHASANA suits certain people. And the more idiotic a person is, the more it suits him. To a man of intelligence it is dangerous; the higher the intelligence, the more dangerous. Because it is not just a posture, it changes your whole body chemistry.
Man has attained intelligence but no animal has. Why? Because man stands on two legs; that is the whole point. If a child continued to walk on all fours, he would never become a man. He would never attain that intelligence. When your spine is parallel to the earth blood flows equally all over the body; it goes to the legs in the same amount as it goes to the head. Then the head cannot develop subtle nerves - it cannot develop a subtle nervous system. Subtle is your brain mechanism, very subtle, the most subtle thing in the world.
Your head weighs only one and a half kilos. Even if it is the head of an Einstein, a great genius's head, it still weighs only one and a half kilos. In this small head there are seventy million cells. Each cell can carry millions of bits of information. And the cell is so subtle that if the blood flows too fast the cell dies. Blood must not move into the head too much, otherwise it washes away the subtle mechanism. So if someone is stupid, idiotic, imbecilic, SIRSHASANA is the best thing, because it cannot do any harm and he will feel very good. It will not do any harm and he will feel very good because the blood will flow to the head in a flood and when the flood recedes, everything will relax.
He will feel very good, just as when you take a bath you feel very good. But if you are very intelligent then it is dangerous. Then you will get stuck in it, your subtle mechanism will be destroyed. You may feel good physically, but mentally it will prove destructive. So if a very intelligent person does it he may go mad; if an unintelligent person does it he may become more healthy.
And then there is the question of time, how much? For a few seconds even for an intelligent man it may be good, just a few seconds, just a flood and then back: then nothing is destroyed, everything just becomes more alive in the brain. But that has to be decided by a master, not by you - you cannot do it through books. Only a living master can decide how many seconds will be enough for you, otherwise you will be moving in danger. But the human mind is childish. If something goes wrong with your watch, the first inclination is to open it to see what has gone wrong, and to do something. Please don't do anything, otherwise many more things will go wrong. Because a watch is a subtle mechanism and only somebody who knows should open it. You will not be repairing it; you may do so much harm that it will become almost impossible to repair it. And a watch is nothing - before a brain a watch is nothing. Don't do anything through books; books cannot be helpful.
Somebody is needed who can look through your mind, through the whole brain system, who can feel how your inner brain is functioning; only he can decide how many seconds and whether it will be good or not.
And this is just an example. Many people go on trying things through books. Life is very complex, books can only give you dead rules, and if you follow them you are moving into a dangerous zone.
It is better not to do anything than to do something wrong. It is better to remain ordinary - remain in an ordinary life. If you cannot find a living master, if you cannot trust in somebody, then don't do it.
At least you will remain sane; otherwise, you can go insane.
The inner system of your bio-energy is very complex - the whole universe is nothing compared to it.
The whole universe moves on very simple lines.
Man is the most complex being; that is why no lion can go mad but man is always on the verge.
Almost any moment you can go mad. It is such a complex phenomenon that one should move in it with great alertness. And understanding is needed, not rules. Through books, scriptures, rules, you can have knowledge but not understanding. Each person is different: man is different from woman, each individual is different from the other. Not only that, every day you are different from the day before. Yesterday you were one person, today you are somebody else, tomorrow you will be somebody else again. A very, very deep understanding is needed; rules cannot be the substitute.
Now we will enter the sutra:
SYMPHONY FOR A SEA BIRD.
YOU CANNOT PUT A BIG LOAD A SMALL BAG NOR CAN YOU, WITH A SHORT ROPE, DRAW WATER FROM A DEEP WELL.
But this is what everybody is doing: trying to put a big load in a small bag. You never bother about the bag or what your capacity is. The first thing is to know your limitations, then think about your achievement. What is your capacity? What are you capable of? What is your intrinsic capacity?
Nobody bothers about it. If a man who has no musical ear goes on trying to become a musician his whole life will be wasted because a musician is born, not made. A man who has no feeling goes on trying to become a poet or a painter. If a man who has no eyes tries to become a painter he is going to be a failure, because a painter has a different type of eye - almost the third eye. When you look at the trees you see one green, when a painter looks he sees thousands of greens, not one. Each tree has a greenery of its own. And he feels colour; colour has a vibration for him; the whole world is nothing but colour.
Hindus say that the whole world is sound.
It so happens that those few people who wrote the Upanishads were poets, musicians; they had an ear for sound. Then the whole universe turned into a sound - OMKAR, ANAHATA. A man who has never been in love with music goes on trying with the mantra AUM - nothing happens. He goes on repeating it inside - nothing happens. He goes to this master and that and never thinks about his own capacity.
If you have a musical ear, if you have a heart which can understand music - not only understand but feel - then a mantra will be helpful. Because then you can become one with the inner sounds, then you can move with those sounds to more and more subtle layers. Then a moment comes when all sounds stop and only the universal sound remains. That is AUM. That is why Hindus say that the whole world consists of sound. This is not true, this is not an absolute truth; this is the truth of the musician.
Remember there are no absolute truths, every truth is individual - it is your truth. There is no truth as an objectivity. Your truth may not be a truth to me, my truth may not be a truth to you, because truth is not objective. I am there, involved in it, my truth means me - your truth means you.
When Buddha reaches, when Jesus or Chuang Tzu reaches they have reached the same universal source, but their interpretations differ.
A Buddha is not a musician at all; he finds no sound there. He is not a painter; he finds no colour there. He is a very silent man, silence is his music. That is why he finds a formless void - SHUNYA - everything empty. That is his truth. He has come to the same source, the source is one, but the people who come are different. They look, they see, they feel in different ways. That is why there are so many philosophies, so many religions. When Meera comes to the same source she starts dancing. You cannot conceive of Buddha dancing, you cannot conceive of Jesus dancing! Meera starts dancing - she has come to the beloved. The heart of a woman, the feeling of love - then the source becomes the beloved. She has come to her lover. The source is the same, the truth ultimately is the same, but the moment someone says it - it is different. And remember, nobody's truth can be yours; YOU have to uncover it.
The first thing is to remember your capacity, but you are so confused you cannot feel what your capacity is. Hence the need of a master who can take your pulse with his hand and who can feel what your capacity is. You may go on making much effort in a wrong direction but the outcome will be nothing. You can reach only in a certain way; you can reach only through you.
YOU CANNOT PUT A BIG LOAD IN A SMALL BAG, NOR CAN YOU, WITH A SHORT ROPE, DRAW WATER FROM A DEEP WELL.
Know your capacity - that is the first point. If you rightly know your capacity, then the first step has been taken and the last is not very far away. If the first is wrong, then you may walk and walk for lives together and you will not reach anywhere.
HAVE YOU NOT HEARD HOW A BIRD FROM THE SEA WAS BLOWN INSHORE AND LANDED OUTSIDE THE CAPITAL OF LU?
A beautiful parable - a bird from the sea landed outside the capital of Lu, a beautiful bird.
The Prince ordered a solemn reception - because a Prince is a Prince, and he thought that a king among birds had come, and just as other princes have to be received so this bird which was so beautiful had to be received with equal honour. But how to receive a bird? The Prince had his own ways.
THE PRINCE ORDERED A SOLEMN RECEPTION, OFFERED THE SEA BIRD WINE IN THE SACRED PRECINCT, CALLED FOR MUSICIANS TO PLAY the COMPOSITIONS OF SHUN, SLAUGHTERED CATTLE TO NOURISH IT. DAZED WITH SYMPHONIES THE UNHAPPY SEA BIRD DIED OF DESPAIR.
Although everything was done to receive the guest, nobody bothered who the guest was. The guest was received according to the host, not according to the guest, and that killed the poor bird.
Many of you are simply dead because of the host. Nobody looks at you. A child is born and the parents start thinking what to make of him. Even before he is born they start thinking.
I was staying in the home of a friend. The friend is a professor in a university, and his wife is also a professor. Both are very intelligent persons with gold medals and certificates and Ph.D.'s. I saw their daughter - they have only one daughter - playing on the piano, weeping and crying. So I asked her mother: What is the matter? The mother said: I always wanted to be a musician and my parents wouldn't allow it. This is not going to happen again to my daughter - she has to be a musician. I have suffered so much because my parents wouldn't allow me, they forced me to be a professor. I am not going to force my daughter to be a professor, she is going to be a musician!
And the daughter was crying and weeping!
You are so confused because of others: your mother wants you to be one thing, your father something else. It is bound to be so because they never agree, fathers and mothers, they never agree.
Mulla Nasrudin's son told me: I would like to be a doctor but my mother insists that I have to be an engineer. So what can I do? I said: You do one thing. You spread the rumour that your father wants you to be an engineer. So now he is a doctor They are always opposed, father and mother, and their opposition goes deep within you, it becomes an inner conflict. Your father and your mother may be dead, no longer in this world, but they are within your unconscious - still fighting. They will never leave you in peace. Whatsoever you do, your father says do it, then your mother says don't. Your inner conflict is your parent's conflict. And then there are uncles and brothers and sisters and many relatives and you are alone amidst so many well-wishers. And they all want you to be something according to them. They destroy you. And then the whole of your life becomes a confusion - you don't know what you want to be, you don't know where you want to go, you don't know what you are doing and why you are doing it. Then you feel miserable. Misery comes if you cannot grow to be a natural being; if you cannot grow according to yourself.
This happened to that sea bird and this has happened to all sea birds - you are all sea birds.
One day you landed in a womb in the capital of Lu, you were received with great pomp and show.
Astrologers decided what was to be done, musicians welcomed you with their music, parents with their love. And all together they have made you just insane and nothing else.
A wise man receives you not according to him, he receives you according to you. The sea bird was killed by the musicians and their beautiful symphonies. And the prince was doing everything right:
this was how a guest had to be received.
HOW SHOULD YOU TREAT A SEA BIRD? AS YOURSELF, OR AS A BIRD?
Always give the opportunity to the other to be himself - that is what understanding is, that is what love is. Don't force yourself on others. Your wishes may be good, but the result will be bad. A good wish is not enough in itself; it may turn poisonous. The real point is not your good wish. The real point is to give freedom to the other to be himself or herself.
Allow your wife to be herself; allow your husband to be himself; allow your child to be himself - don't force.
We are all sea birds, unknown to each other, strangers. Nobody knows who you are. At the most, all we can do is to help you to be whatsoever you are going to be. And the future is unknown; it cannot be forced. And there is no way to know it, no astrology will help, these are all foolish methods.
People depend on them because people are stupid. Astrologers continue to exist because we go on wanting to know about the future so that we can plan. Life cannot be planned; it is an unplanned flood - and it is good that it is unplanned. If it is planned then everything will be dead and boring.
It is good that nobody is able to predict the future, it is good that the future remains unknown, unpredictable, because there lies the whole freedom. If the future becomes known, then there is no freedom left, then you will move like a predictable mechanism. But that is what we want, or that is what we try to do.
If you are a little understanding, give others around you freedom to be themselves and don't allow anybody to interfere with your freedom. Don't make anybody a slave to you and don't become a slave to anybody. This is what SANNYAS is. This is my meaning of SANNYAS. It is a man who has decided not to enslave anybody and not to be enslaved by anybody; a man who has decided to remain authentically true to himself, and wheresoever this truth leads, he is ready to go.
This is courage - because it may lead you into insecurity and you would like to be more secure; so you will listen to others and their well-wishing and then their symphonies will kill you. They have already killed you. Why do you listen to others? Because you feel that they know more.
I heard-one small child asking his elder brother something. The small one was five and the elder was ten. The junior was saying to the senior: You go to mother and ask for her permission so that we can go to the theatre. So the senior said: But why not you? Why don't you go? The junior said:
You have known her longer than me.
This is the old problem. You listen to your mother because she has known this world longer than you.
You listen to your father because he has known this world longer than you. But do your think that just by being here a long time anybody knows anything? Do you think time gives understanding?
Do you think seniority is wisdom? Then go to the government offices and look at the senior people there. Seniority may be wisdom in a government office but it is not in life.
Life is not understood through time, it is understood through meditation. It is a going inwards. Time is an outer movement time is on the periphery. A man can live for a thousand years and remain stupid.
Actually he will become more stupid because he will grow. And if you have a seed of stupidity in you within a thousand years you will become such a vast tree that millions of stupid people can rest under you. Whatsoever you have, grows; nothing is static, everything is growing. So a stupid person becomes more stupid, a wise person becomes more wise - but time has nothing to do with understanding.
Understanding is not temporal, it is not more experience. It is not the quantity of experience that makes you wise, it is the quality. A single experience can give you more wisdom, if you bring the quality of awareness to it, than you may gain in many lives. A man may have made love to many women, thousands of women, thousands of times. Do you think he knows what love is? There is quantity! You ask a Byron, a Don juan, there is quantity. Don Juans keep records, they go on counting how many women they have conquered. There is quantity, but have they known love? One single love can give you wisdom if you bring quality to it. The quality has to be brought by you.
What is that quality? That quality is awareness. If you make love to a single woman for a single time, with your total being, fully alert, you have come to know what love is. Otherwise you can go on and on and on, it becomes a repetition. And then you need not do anything, the wheel repeats by itself, it becomes automatic. Wisdom is something that happens when you bring awareness to any experience. The meeting of awareness and experience is wisdom. Experience plus awareness is wisdom. With experience plus more experience plus more experience quantity is gained, but there is no quality.... which would make you free and knowing.
Whenever a child is born, if the mother loves the child if the father loves the child, they will not force themselves on him because they will know at least this much: they have been failures. So why give the same pattern to this child? Why destroy another life again? But look at the stupidity. They would like the child to follow their path. And they have not reached anywhere, and they know deep down that they are empty, hollow, but again they are forcing a child to move on the same path, to reach the same hollowness in the end. Why? Because it feels good to the ego to know that 'my child is following me'.
You may not have reached anywhere but if your son is following you it gives you a good feeling. As if you have attained, the son is following you. And if you are not satisfied by a son, then you can gather followers, disciples. And there are many who are always ready to fall into anybody's trap; because people are so unfulfilled that they are ready to follow anybody's advice. And the problem is that because of others' advice they are unfulfilled - and they go on asking for it again and again. Mind is a vicious thing. You are so empty and hollow because you have been following others' advice; yet again you are searching for others to advise you. When will you become aware that basically you are missing because you have not followed your inner voice?
So a master cannot give you rules. If a master gives you rules, know well he is a pseudo-master.
Escape from him! A master can only give you understanding, and show you how to understand yourself - then rules will come but they will come out of your understanding.
HOW SHOULD YOU TREAT A SEA BIRD? AS YOURSELF, OR AS A BIRD?
OUGHT NOT A BIRD TO NEST IN DEEP WOODLAND OR FLY OVER MEADOW AND MARSH?
OUGHT IT NOT TO SWIM ON RIVER AND POND, FEED ON EELS AND FISH, FLY IN FORMATION WITH OTHER WATER FOWL, AND REST IN THE REEDS?
BAD ENOUGH FOR A SEA BIRD TO BE SURROUNDED BY MEN AND FRIGHTENED BY THEIR VOICES. THAT WAS NOT ENOUGH! THEY KILLED IT WITH MUSIC.
Everybody is being killed by music. That music comes out of good wishing, the well-wishers, the do- gooders. The whole thing seems to be so absurd and insane. If you plant one thousand trees and only one comes to flower and nine hundred and ninety nine die, will anybody call you a gardener?
Will anybody give you any credit for the one tree that has flowered? They will say it must have flowered in spite of you because you killed nine hundred and ninety-nine. You cannot take credit for the one, it must have escaped somehow! It must have escaped your skill, your experience, your wisdom. In millions of men one becomes a Buddha and flowers. What is happening? Why do many trees have to live without flowers? And look at a tree when there are no flowers and flowers never come. What sadness settles on the tree. It cannot laugh; it cannot sing; it cannot dance. Flowers are needed to dance. How can you dance? Even if I say to you, 'Dance!' how can you dance? Because dance is an overflowing delight, such an overflowing that every cell of the body starts dancing, you become a dancing cosmos. But how can you? The energy is not flowing, there is no energy coming.
You are somehow carrying yourself, dragging yourself. How can you dance? Flowers come when the tree has so much that it can give. Flowers are a gift, they are a sharing. The tree is saying to the whole universe: I am more than I need. It is a song. The tree is saying: Now I move into the world of luxury. My needs are fulfilled. The tree has more than it needs - then flowering happens.
And you are so discontented, you don't have even as much as you need. How can you dance? How can you sing? How can you meditate?
Meditation is the ultimate flowering, the ecstasy that comes only when you are overflowing in a flood, when you have so much energy that you cannot sit, you can only dance; when you have so much energy that you cannot do anything but share and invite guests to share your energy and your delight, your singing and your dancing.
It happened that one of my university teachers came to see me. He said: You must remember that I was your teacher. So I told him: Yes, I remember. How can I forget? It is in spite of you that I am whatsoever I am. You could not succeed with me. You tried and I will always feel thankful towards you that you failed. You couldn't succeed.
He really loved me and he tried in every way to force me into the academic world. He loved me so much and he cared so much about me that whenever there would be an examination, in the morning he would come with his car and take me to the examination hall, because he was always afraid that I may not go or that I may be meditating. Before examinations he would come to tell me: read this, read this, read this. This is coming up, because I am the paper-setter. And again and again he would remind me: Have you read that or not? And know well that I am the paper setter and that is coming up. He was always afraid that I wouldn't listen to him.
He loved me. Your parents also loved you, your teachers also loved you, but they are unconscious, they don't know what they are doing. Even though they love you something goes wrong, and that something is that they try to give you something according to themselves. He wanted me to become a great university professor, somewhere in some great university head of a department, or a dean or a vice chancellor. He imagined these things and I always laughed and asked him: What will I gain through this? What have you gained? You are a head of the department, a dean with so many degrees - Honorary Doctor of Literature, and this and that - what have you gained? And he would smile knowingly and say: You just wait and do whatsoever I am saying. Because at this question, 'What have you gained?' he would always feel a little perplexed, confused.
What could he say? He had not gained anything and now he was nearing death. He would have liked his ambition to move through me. He would have liked me to carry his ambition.
A father dies unfulfilled, but he hopes that at least his son will reach the goal. And this is how it goes on and on, and nobody reaches. Love is not enough; awareness is needed. If love is there without awareness it becomes an imprisonment and if love is there with awareness it becomes a freedom.
It helps you to be yourself.
BAD ENOUGH FOR A SEA BIRD TO BE SURROUNDED BY MEN AND FRIGHTENED BY THEIR VOICES. THAT WAS NOT ENOUGH! THEY KILLED IT WITH MUSIC!
WATER IS FOR FISH AND AIR FOR MEN. NATURES DIFFER, AND NEEDS WITH THEM. HENCE THE WISE MEN OF OLD DID NOT LAY DOWN ONE MEASURE FOR ALL.
You cannot be treated as things. Things can be similar; souls cannot be. You can have one million Ford cars just the same. You can replace one Ford car with another Ford car and there will be no trouble, but you cannot replace a human being. When a human being disappears, that place that he occupied will always remain forever and forever unoccupied. Nobody can occupy it, it is impossible to occupy it, because nobody can be exactly the same as that man was. Everybody is unique so no rules can be laid down.
THE WISE MEN OF OLD... but if you go to the wise men of today you will find rules and regulations and everything - a framework. They will make you a soldier but not a sannyasin. A soldier is a dead man because his whole function is to bring death into the world. He cannot be allowed to be very alive, otherwise how will he bring death? Death can only come through a dead man. He has to kill.
And before he kills others he has to be killed completely himself, through rules. So the whole army training is to kill the aliveness of the person, the consciousness of the person - to make him an automaton. So they go on saying to him, 'Right turn, left turn, right turn, left turn,' for years together!
What nonsense is going on? Why right turn, why left turn? But there is a point to it - they want to make you an automaton. Right turn - and every day for hours you are doing it. It becomes a bodily phenomenon. When they say, 'Right turn!' you need not think about it, the body simply moves.
When they say, 'Left turn!' the body simply moves. Now you are a mechanism. And when they say, 'About!' you shoot; the body moves, the consciousness does not interfere.
The whole point of army training all over the world is to cut consciousness from your actions so that the actions become automatic, you become more efficient, skilled. Because consciousness is always a trouble... If you are killing a person and you think - you will miss. If you think: Why kill this man? He has not done anything to me. I don't even know who he is, he is a stranger. If you think, you will also have the feeling that you have a mother at home, a wife, a small child, who are waiting for you, and the same is going to be the case with the other. A mother must be waiting somewhere, a wife praying that her husband will come back, a child hoping that his father will be back. Why kill this man and kill those hopes of a child, of a wife, of a mother, of a father, brother, friends? Why kill this man?
And he has not done anything wrong to you, just two politicians have gone mad. They can go and fight with each other and decide the matter. Why decide through others?
If you are alert, aware, it will be impossible for you to shoot and kill. So the whole training of the army is to divide awareness and action, to cut and create a gap. So awareness continues on its own. and action continues on its own and they become parallel, they never meet.
Just the opposite is the training of a SANNYASIN: it is how to destroy the gap that exists between consciousness and action - how to bring them together. They should not be parallel lines, they should become one whole. It is how to be conscious in each of your actions, how not to be an automaton. And when all your automatism disappears you have become enlightened; then you are a Buddha.
Through rules this cannot be done. Through rules you can be made a soldier but you cannot be made a SANNYASIN. All rules have to be dropped; understanding has to be gained. But remember, dropping the rules does not mean that you become anti-social. Dropping the rules only means that because you exist in the society you follow certain rules, but they are just rules of the game - nothing else.
If you play cards then you have rules: a certain card is the king, another card is the queen. You know that this is foolishness, no card is the king, no card is the queen; but if you want to play the game, certain rules have to be followed. They are rules of the game, nothing is ultimate about them.
You have to follow the traffic rules.
Remember, the whole of morality is nothing but traffic rules. You live in a society, you are not alone there, there are many others. Certain rules have to be followed but they are not ultimate, they have nothing of ultimacy in them. They are just like walking on the left. In America you walk on the right - no problem. If the rule is followed, keep to the right, it is okay. If the rule is followed, keep to the left, it is also okay. Both are the same but one has to be followed. If you have both the rules then there will be traffic jams and there will be difficulty - unnecessary difficulty.
When you live with others, life has to follow certain rules. Those rules are neither religious, nor moral, nor divine, they are just man-made. One has to be aware of this, one has to know their relativity; they are formal.
You need not break all the rules, there is no need, because then you will be in unnecessary trouble, and rather than becoming a SANNYASIN you will become a criminal. Remember that!
A SANNYASIN is not a soldier, a SANNYASIN is not a criminal; a SANNYASIN knows that rules are just a game. He is not against them, he transcends them, he goes beyond them, he keeps himself free of them. He follows them for others but he doesn't become an automaton. He remains conscious and fully alert. Consciousness is the goal.
That is why Chuang Tzu says: HENCE THE WISE MEN OF OLD DID NOT LAY DOWN ONE MEASURE FOR ALL. They have not laid down any measures really. They have attempted, through many ways and means, to awaken you. You are so fast asleep, I can hear your snoring! How to awaken you? How to shock you towards awareness? And when you are awake, no rules are needed. Still you follow rules but you know no rules are needed. You don't become a criminal, you transcend and become a SANNYASIN.