The Pulse of the Universe
ONCE UPON A TIME THERE WAS A MAN STANDING ON A HIGH HILL. THREE TRAVELLERS, PASSING IN THE DISTANCE, NOTICED HIM AND BEGAN TO ARGUE ABOUT HIM. ONE SAID, 'HE HAS PROBABLY LOST HIS FAVOURITE ANIMAL.' ANOTHER SAID, 'NO, HE IS PROBABLY LOOKING FOR HIS FRIEND.'
THE THIRD SAID, 'HE IS UP THERE ONLY IN ORDER TO ENJOY THE FRESH AIR.'
THE THREE TRAVELLERS COULD NOT AGREE AND CONTINUED TO ARGUE RIGHT UP TO THE MOMENT WHEN THEY ARRIVED AT THE TOP OF THE HILL.
ONE OF THEM ASKED: 'O FRIEND, STANDING ON THIS HILL, HAVE YOU NOT LOST YOUR FAVOURITE ANIMAL?' 'NO, SIR, I HAVE NOT LOST HIM.'
THE OTHER ASKED: 'HAVE YOU NOT LOST YOUR FRIEND?' 'NO, SIR, I HAVE NOT LOST MY FRIEND EITHER.'
THE THIRD TRAVELLER ASKED: 'ARE YOU NOT HERE IN ORDER TO ENJOY THE FRESH AIR?' 'NO, SIR.' 'WHAT THEN ARE YOU DOING HERE, SINCE YOU ANSWER NO TO ALL OUR QUESTIONS?'
THE MAN ON THE HILL REPLIED: 'I AM JUST STANDING.'
WHAT IS MEDITATION? Meditation is to be in harmony -- within and without.
Meditation is to be in harmony. Meditation is to be the harmony.
Man has lost himself because he has lost this harmony. He is in conflict; he is pulled apart in different directions simultaneously. He is not one, he is many. To be the many is to be in a non-meditative state; not to be the many and to be just one, is to be in meditation. And when there is really only one, when even one is no longer there.... In the East we have called it the state of non-duality, not the state of oneness. We had to invent this word 'non-duality' to describe, to indicate, that it is not dual, that's all. Two is no longer there, many have disappeared, and of course with the many, one also disappears.
The one can exist only amongst the many.
Man is ordinarily a crowd, a mob. Man is ordinarily not a self because he has no integration. He is all fragments, he is not together, he is not one piece.
Meditation is to be one piece, aud when you are one piece you are in peace.
First this harmony has to be achieved inside and then it has to be achieved outside too.
First a man has to become a harmony and there has to start pulsating with the greater harmony of the existence.
So there are two steps in meditation. The first step is not to be in conflict within yourself, not to allow any warring to continue any longer within yourself -- mind fighting with the body, reason fighting with feeling, feeling fighting with sexuality. A continuous fight is going on -- have you not observed it? There is a continuous war; without any gap it continues.
Of course, you cannot be happy. Unless these warring elements within you embrace each other, stop warring, fall in love with each other, or dissolve into each other, there is no possibility of happiness. Then happiness remains just a hope. Happiness is a shadow of harmony, it follows harmony. There is no other was to be happy. Unless you are the harmony, you can strive and strive and you will get more and more frustrated and you will get more and more into misery. Just as a shadow follows you, so happiness follows when you are in a harmonious totality.
The first step happens within you -- and when you have become one pulsation with no division, one wave of energy with no antagonizing, with no lower and no higher, with no choice, with no evaluation, with no judgement, when you are simply one, then happens the second step. When you are one you can see the one -- only then can the one be seen.
The eyes are clear then you have the clarity. When you are one you can immediately see the one around you. Now you know the language of the one. The language of the many has disappeared -- that noise is no more, that madhouse is no more, that nightmare is finished. You are silent. In this silence you can immediately dissolve into existence; now you can fall in tune with the pulse of the universe itself. That is the second step of meditation.
The first is difficult, the second is not difficult. The first needs effort, great effort; the second is very simple, comes almost automatically. The first is like a blind man being operated upon so that he can have eyes. The second is after the operation is over: the eyes are there and the blind man opens his eyes and he can see the light and the world of light and the millions of joys around him of colour, of light, of beauty, of form.
The first needs effort, the second comes effortlessly. The first is more like yoga, the second is more like Zen -- or, to come to a more modern parallel, the first is more like Gurdjieff and the second is more like Krishnamurti. That's why I say Zen is the pinnacle.
Zen is the last word. Yoga is the beginning of the journey, Zen is the end.
When you are one and suddenly you see the oneness outside, all barriers disappear. Then there is no 'I' and no 'thou', then there is only God or truth or samadhi or whatsoever word you like -- nirvana. Zen people call this state SONOMAMA or KONOMAMA -- the state of pure isness, suchness, TATHATA. One simply is. One is not doing anything, one is not thinking anything, one is not feeling anything, one simply is. This isness is the ultimate experience of bliss. Beyond it there is nothing. And this is the goal. To arrive at this isness is the search, the eternal search, of every being.
Before we can understand how to attain to this inner harmony we will have to look deep into how we have become a crowd. How has this calamity fallen upon us? Who has created it? How has it been created? Unless we know how it has been created there is no way to uncreate it.
Once it happened that when Buddha came for his morning sermon he had a handkerchief in his hand. Sitting down before his ten thousand monks he started tying knots in the handkerchief. They were all surprised -- he had never done anything like that. What was he doing? Had he forgotten about the sermon? But out of respect they simply kept quiet and went on looking at what he was doing.
After Buddha had tied five knots in the handkerchief he said, 'I want to undo these knots.
Before I undo them I would like to ask two questions. One is: Is this handkerchief the same as it was before the knots were tied?'
One of his great disciples, Ananda, said, 'Bhagwan, in one way it is the same because the tied knots make no difference to its existence. They don't add anything and they don't destroy anything. The handkerchief remains exactly the same, its quality is the same, it is still the handkerchief. But still it is not the same -- something has changed. It may not be of any fundamental value but now it has something new in it: these five knots. It is tied together so it is no longer free. The freedom has been lost. The handkerchief is the same but now it is a slave.'
Buddha said, 'Right, Ananda, that's what I wanted to tell my monks. When man is divided he remains in one way the same and yet he is not the same. His freedom is lost, his harmony is lost -- and yet fundamentally nothing has changed. You are gods and goddesses, nothing has changed; it is just that the god has become imprisoned. A few knots have come into existence Fundamentally you are as free as a Buddha, existentially you are exactly where I am, and yet psychologically you are not where I am, you are not what Buddha is. Existentially we are all Buddhas, psychologically we live in different, private worlds... those knots.'
Then Buddha asked the other question. He said, 'Monks, I have another question to ask which is: If I want to undo these knots, what should I do?' Another monk, Sariputtra, stood up and said, 'Bhagwan, if you want to undo them let me come closer, let me observe them. Because unless I know how they have been tied there is no way to know how they can be undone. What process has been used to tie them? How have they been created? Only knowing that, can they be untied. Let me come closer. And don't do anything before I look, because if you do something without knowing how the knots have come into existence you may create even more subtle knots. They may become even more difficult. It may even become impossible to open them.'
And Buddha said, 'Right, Sariputtra, that's exactly what I wanted to say.'
Before one understands how to attain, one has to understand how one is missing. What are the causes of our misery? How did we become divided? How did this impossible happen -- that the indivisible has become divided, that the absolutely blissful has fallen into misery, that gods have become imprisoned? How did it happen?
The 'how' has to be known very, very minutely, so first we will go into the 'how' of it.
We can start with Plato. He is at the very foundation of the modern mind. With him division starts very clearly and logically. It must have existed before him but it was never propounded so logically, it was never before supported by a genius like Plato. And since then, for these two thousand years, the division has been believed in. And if you believe a certain thing for two thousand years it becomes a reality. A belief tends to turn to reality; a belief hypnotises; and by and by functions almost as if it is there.
Plato claimed that human behaviour flows from three main sources: knowledge, emotion and desire. That is the first indication of the clear-cut division in man. Man is divided into three: knowledge, emotion, desire. Knowledge has its source in the head, emotion in the heart, and desire in the loins -- head, heart and the genitals, these are the three divisions.
Of course, head is the highest, heart is in the middle and the genitals are the lowest. The man who lives through the genitals is the lowest man; in India we call him the SHUDRA, the untouchable. And the man who lives through the head is the highest man; in India we call him the BRAHMIN. And everybody else is just in-between these two -- different degrees of emotionality.
These three divisions are not just a belief. They have penetrated so deeply into human consciousness that now human consciousness exists as three. You are divided, you are no longer one; you are three, you have become a trinity. You have three faces. One is the sexual face, which is very private and which you keep in the dark. The second is the emotional face which is not so private but is still very private -- only rarely do you exhibit it. If somebody has died and you cry and weep then it is okay. But ordinarily you don't cry and weep, or you have left it to women because they are not such high creatures as man.
Male chauvinism is everywhere. The woman is not accepted as a BRAHMIN, many religions have denied her -- have said that she will not be able to enter the kingdom of God as a woman. She will first have to be born as a man, only then does she become credible. Only a man enters the paradise. A woman is a lower creature. She has only two centres, the sexual and the emotional -- she has no head, she has no brain, she has no intellect. So, of course, she is allowed to cry and weep and laugh and show emotions and be sentimental. Man very rarely, in rare situations, allows his emotions to show.
Sex is absolutely private; emotions are half private and half public; intellect is absolutely public. That is the thing which you go on showing everywhere, which you exhibit.
Reason, logic, knowledge -- that is the thing.
After two thousand years Sigmund Freud again repeated the same division -- very strange bed-fellows, Plato and Freud. But somehow man has accepted the divisions so deeply that it has become unconscious. Freud also says that reason is the king, emotion the queen and sex the servant, and, of course, long live the king! Destroy sexuality, destroy emotion and bring your whole energy towards the head. Remain hung-up in the head.
But without sex, all joy disappears and without emotion all softness, sensitivity, disappears. With reason you become a dry desert land, a wasteland. Nothing grows.
I was reading Charles Darwin's autobiography and I came across this passage. It is very revealing. Charles Darwin writes: 'Poetry of many kinds gave me great pleasure when I was a child, even when I was young. Formerly pictures gave me considerable and music very great joy, very great delight. But now for many years I cannot endure to read a line of poetry. I have tried and found it so intolerably dull that it nauseates me. I have also lost almost any taste for pictures or music. My mind seems to have become a kind of machine for grinding general laws out of large collections of facts. Why this should have caused the atrophy of that part of the brain alone on which the higher tastes depend, I cannot conceive. The loss of these tastes is a loss of happiness.'
This he writes in his old age. He has lost all taste for poetry; in fact, it nauseates him. He cannot tolerate music. He does not say any thing about his love -- if poetry nauseates and if music becomes intolerable, love will become impossible. What kind of man has Darwin become? He himself confesses that he has become a kind of machine.
That's what has happened to humanity at large. Everybody has become a machine -- smaller machines, bigger machines, more skilful machines, less skilful machines -- but everybody has become a machine.
And those parts which are denied go on rebelling against you, hence the constant war.
You cannot destroy sexuality; you can transcend it, certainly, but you cannot destroy it.
And you cannot destroy your emotions. The heart goes on functioning and goes on weaving dreams. Maybe it goes underground because you are too much against it, maybe it disappears into the unconscious, finds a deep, dark cave and lives there, but it lives.
Emotions can be transformed but cannot be destroyed. Neither sex nor heart can be destroyed.
That's what the head has been doing: the head generally exists at the expense of the heart and at the expense of the body. It kills the heart, it kills the body, and then it lives like a ghost in a machine. You can see it happening all over the world. The more a person becomes educate3d, the less alive he is. The more he knows, the less he lives. The more he becomes articulate about abstractions and concepts, the less and less he flows. A man confined in the head loses all juice, loses all joy. Charles Darwin's observation is perfect.
He says, 'What has happened to me? Why have I lost all my happiness? Where have my delight and joy gone?'
You have taken all your energy into your head, you have not left any energy for your sexuality -- because all joy is out of sexuality, let me remind you. When I use the word 'sexuality' I don't just mean genitality. The genital is only one very, very tiny experience and expression of the sexual. The sexual is a very great thing. By sexual I mean whenever your body is alive, sensuous, throbbing, pulsating -- then you are in a sexual state. It may not have anything to do with the genital. For example, when you are dancing you are sexual; a dancer is sexual, the dance energy is sexual energy. It is not genital, you may not be thinking at all about sex, you may have completely forgotten all about sex; in fact, when you forget everything about sex and you are dissolved into any deep participation with your total body, it is sexuality. You may be swimming or running -- running in the morning.
For ten years I used to run eight miles every morning and eight miles every evening -- from I947 to I957. It was a regular thing. And I came to experience many, many things through running. At sixteen miles per day I would have encircled the world seven times in those ten years. After you run the second or third mile a moment comes when things start flowing and you are no longer in the head, you become your body, you are the body.
You start functioning as an alive being -- as trees function, as animals function. You become a tiger or a peacock or a wolf. You forget all head. The university is forgotten, the degrees are forgotten, you don't know a thing, you simply are.
In fact, by and by, after three or four miles, you cannot conceive of yourself as a head.
Totality arises. Plato is forgotten, Freud has disappeared, all divisions disappear -- because they were on the surface -- and deep down your unity starts asserting itself.
Running against the wind in the early morning when things are fresh and the whole existence is in a new joy, is bathed in a new delight of the new day, and everything is fresh and young, the past has disappeared, everything has come out of deep rest in the night, everything is innocent, primitive -- suddenly even the runner disappears. There is only running. There is no body running, there is only running. And by and by you see that a dance arises with the wind, with the sky, with the sun rays coming, with the trees, with the earth. You are dancing. You start feeling the pulse of the Universe. That is sexual.
Swimming in; river is sexual. Copulating is not the only sexual thing; anything where your body pulsates totally. With no inhibitions is sexual.
So when I use the word 'sexual' I mean this experience of totality Genitality is only one of the functions of sexuality. It has become too important because we have forgotten the total function of sexuality. In fact, your so-called mahatmas have made you very, very genital. The whole blame falls on your saints and mahatmas -- they are the culprits, the criminals. They have never told you what real sexuality is.
By and by sexuality has become confined to the genitals; it has become local, it is no longer total. Local genitality is ugly because at the most it can give you a relief; it can never give you orgasm. Ejaculation is not orgasm, all ejaculations are not orgasmic and each orgasm is not a peak experience. Ejaculation is genital, orgasm is sexual and a peak experience is spiritual. When sexuality is confined to the genitals you can have only relief; you simply lose energy, you don't gain anything. It is simply stupid. It is just like the relief that comes out of a good sneeze, not more than that.
It has no orgasm because your total body does not pulsate. You are not in a dance, you don't participate with your whole, it is not holy. It is very partial and the partial can never be orgasmic because orgasm is possible only when the total organism is involved. When you pulsate from your toe to your head, when every fibre of your being pulsates, when all cells of your body dance, when there is a great orchestra inside you, when everything is dancing -- then there is orgasm. But every orgasm is not a peak experience either. When you are pulsating totally inside, it is an orgasm. When your totality participates with the totality of existence it is a peak experience. And people have decided on ejaculation, they have forgotten orgasm and they have completely forgotten the peak experience. They don't know what it is.
And because they cannot attain the higher, they are confined to the lower. When you can attain the higher, when you can attain the better, naturally the lower starts disappearing on its own accord. If you understand me... sex will be transformed, but not sexuality. You will become more sexual. As sex disappears you will become more sexual. Where will sex go? It will become your sexuality. You will become more sensuous. You will live with more intensity, with more flame; you will live like a great wave. These tiny waves will disappear. You will become a storm, you will become a great wind that can shake the trees and the mountains. You will be a tide, a flood. Your candle will burn at both ends together, simultaneously.
And in that moment -- even if you are allowed to live for only one moment, that's more than enough -- you have the taste of eternity.
From Plato to Freud the division has persisted in the minds of the philosophers, pedagogues, politicians, pundits. That division has become almost a reality now. You don't think about your genitals as you -- do you? You start thinking as if they belong to you and you are separate.
There are people who even have names for their genitals. Then the separation is complete. Then you use them as instruments. You are not them, you use them. Division is complete, utterly complete.
You always think about yourself as the head and the whole body is thought of as something separate. Have you ever thought of yourself as the feet, as the hands, as the backbone, as the blood that circulates inside you? No, your identity remains with the head; the head is the king. And who wants to get identified with the slave, the servant -- or even with the queen?
According to this division a great theology has been evolved -- try to understand it. First is head, second is heart, third is the genitals. God has only the first; the second and third don't exist. God has no emotions and no sexuality. This is the definition of God of almost all religions except Zen. Then there is the saint. The saint has the first and the second, not the third. He has reason, intellect, intellectuality, he has emotions, heart, but he has no sexuality. Then comes the ordinary man. He has all three -- first, second and third. Then comes the sinner. He does not have the first -- he has no intelligence, no intellectuality, no reason, no head -- he has only the second and third; emotions and sexuality. And then comes the Devil. He has only the third. The first two are not there -- there is no reason, no emotion, only sexuality. So in the East, particularly in India, the name of the Devil is Kam Deva, the god of sex. Perfectly right.
So this is the theological division: God, only head; Devil, only sex. The sinner is closer to Devil and is bound to go to hell; the saint is closer to God and is bound to go to heaven.
And between these two is the poor man who has all the three and has naturally more conflict than any of these other four. When you have three you have more conflict.
This is not a Zen concept. This is Christian, this is Mohammedan, this is Hindu, but this is not Zen. Zen has such a radical understanding about life that about everything Zen brings a fresh understanding. Zen says that God is the whole so God has all the three, yet there is no conflict. All the three are in deep harmony together, dancing hand in hand.
They are not warring, they are embracing. And there is a transcendence; because there is no conflict there is a transcendence. In God sex becomes sensuousness. God is sensuous.
Sex becomes aliveness; sex becomes fun, joy, play. Emotions become sensitivity, compassion, love. And reason becomes understanding, awareness, meditation.
This is a totally different outlook. Nothing is denied, nothing is excluded. Zen is all- inclusive. It never denies, it never says 'no' to anything; it accepts everything and transforms it into a higher reality. It is very synergic. Zen is a synergic fulfillment. All energies have to meet and become one energy. Nothing should be denied because if you deny something you will be that much less rich.
Just think of a God, a Christian God, who has no sex, who has no emotions. What kind of God will this be? With just intellect he will be very stony. You can worship a computer instead. A computer is what the Christian God is -- just the head. A computer is the magnified head. And sooner or later we will be making more and more and bigger and bigger computers. One day we will make the perfect computer -- he will be exactly what a God has been proposed to be, just the head. The computer has no sensuousness, no sexuality, no emotions. The computer will not cry if somebody dies, the computer will not laugh, the computer will not celebrate if somebody is born and the computer is not going to fall in love -- the computer is not such a fool. A computer is just head, just pure head. Just think of it... your head has been taken out of your body, out of your totality, and goes on pulsating in a mechanical place, being fed by machines. You simply go on thinking and thinking and thinking and nothing else -- that's what God has been.
But not so according to Zen. The universe, the total, is so rich it includes all. God and man -- the difference is not that man has three and God has one, the difference is that man's three are at war and God's three are in harmony. That's the only difference. You don't know how to put them into an orchestra. The day you know, you are a God. You have all the basic requirements to be a God. It is almost like Sufis say: you have the flour and you have the water and you have the salt and the ghee and the fire is burning and you are sitting there hungry and you don't know how to make chapattis. If you don't know, you should ask one of my sannyasins, Paramahansa. He can make one thoUsand chapattis within hours.
Hunger will not disappear unless you make chapattis. What is a chapatti? It has water, it has flour, it has ghee, it has salt, and it has the fire element in it. Then you can digest it.
Exactly the same is the case with you. You have all that you need to be a God and you are hungry.You have all that is required, nothing is missing, but you don't know how to put it into a synergical fulfillment.
To Zen, spirituality means wholeness; to Zen, holy means wholeness. All has to be included and transformed; all has to be included and transcended. When all is included, there arises an equilibrium. An equilibrium means exactly that -- things are equal. Sex is not the servant, neither is the heart the queen and neither is the reason or the head the king -- no. All are equal. Let me repeat it. Unless you think in terms of equality you will never attain to equilibrium. All are equal. Nobody is a master and nobody is a servant.
This is the Zen revolution.
All are masters and all are servants. There are moments when sex is on the throne and there are moments when emotions are on the throne and there are moments when reason is on the throne -- but nobody is a fixed master, it is a rotation. You are a rotating wheel and these three are your spokes. Sometimes one spoke comes up and another spoke goes down but all three support the wheel. This should be the meaning of the Christian trinity and this should be the meaning of the Hindu trimurti, the three faces of God: one God behind with three faces.
Nobody is the king, nobody is the queen and nobody is the servant -- all are masters and all are servants. That means that nobody is a master and nobody is a servant, they are all together; they support each other, they live with each other, there is a great friendship between them. Befriend all your three elements, don't get identified with one, otherwise you start forcing that one to remain on the throne forever. Befriend all the three, respect all the three and remember that you are all the three and yet you are the centre of all of them.
Just think of a triangle: one angle is sexuality, another angle is emotionality, another angle is intellectuality. Just within the triangle is the centre of consciousness -- you.
When all these three lead to you, to your consciousness, to your awareness, that is what meditation is. In that harmony, in that fulfillment, you have arrived home.
So remember, nothing should be excluded. Life should be a richness and a balance and a transcendence; life should be a synergic fulfillment. All your parts should be fulfilled.
And they can be only fulfilled if they are together and help each other. If they go separately they all remain unfulfilled. That's what has happened -- your head is not fulfilled, your heart is not fulfilled, your sex is not fulfilled. From the bottom to the top you are just nothing but a frustration, an unfulfillment, a discontent, a hunger, a thirst.
You go on stumbling in the dark, you go on searching for something that will fulfill you - - but nothing is going to fulfill you unless the harmony arises inside.
And these are the three paths from which to arrive. A few people enter from sex -- that is the path of tantra. A few people enter from the path of devotion -- that is the path of the heart, emotions, BHAKTI yoga. Those who enter from sex follow tantra yoga, those who follow emotions move through BHAKTI yoga, the path of the devotee. And those who enter through the intellect, intelligence, follow the path of knowledge -- gyana yoga.
These are the three paths. And all the religions of the world are somehow divided into these three.
For example, Vedanta, Jainism, Buddhism follow the path of the head; they go through intelligence, understanding, awareness. They follow the path of GYANA, knowing.
Hinduism, Christianity, Islam follow the path of emotions, BHAKTI yoga. From the heart they enter. Tantra follows the path of sex, it is the yoga of sex. These are the three possibilities.
And Zen is a synthesis of all. Zen is tantra and Zen is devotion and Zen is knowing. Zen says all the three can be combined together, there is no need to choose. One can remain choiceless and use all -- the whole wheel, the whole triangle -- to go within-wards. There is no single medium and there is no single way. None of the routes is more worthy than the other. Follow any path, just remain undivided; follow any route, just don't get identified with the route. remain open to other paths too.
Remember always that man can enter from all the three so don't condemn anybody. If somebody is following the path of tantra don't carry a condemnation in you because that condemnation simply shows that you are condemning your sexuality, nothing else. If somebody else is following the path of devotion, don't condemn him, because that condemnation can mean only one thing: that you are denying your heart its full sway.
And that is going to hinder you, obstruct you.
Now this beautiful anecdote. I his is one of the most beautiful anecdotes. Zen has beautiful stories but nothing to compare with this. If I have to choose only one out of all the Zen stories, then I will choose this one. I have loved this story for many, many years.
ONCE UPON A TIME THERE WAS A MAN STANDING ON A HIGH HILL.
These stories are metaphoric. Try to enter into their metaphors. A man standing on a high hill means a man who has arrived. The high hill means the hill of life and existence. A man standing on high hill means a watcher on the hills who can look all around. All the valleys and all the paths that lead to the top of the hill are in front of him. Everything is available from there; the vision is total, all directions are available. When you are in the valley you cannot have that wide vision when you are on the path you cannot see your path, you cannot see other people moving on other paths -- naturally. You are confined to a very narrow space. The higher you move, the bigger the space becomes.
When you come to the highest peak, when you come to the Everest, when you are standing there, the whole of the Himalayas is available. Not only can you see the path by which you have travelled, you can now see all the paths, all the possible paths coming towards the top. Now you can see even those who were antagonistic to you, or with whom you were antagonistic, They are also travelling, moving; towards the same peak.
Now you call see because the vision from this height is total. Now all distinctions disappear, all philosophies are dropped, all identifications are meaningless. A man is free because his vision is complete.
ONCE UPON A TIME THERE WAS A MAN STANDING ON A HIGH HILL.
This hill is of awareness, this hill is of meditation -- the mountain of meditation.
'THREE TRAVELLERS, PASSING IN THE DISTANCE, NOTICED HIM....'
These are the three travellers I talked about -- the three divisions of man.
'THREE TRAVELLERS, PASSING IN THE DISTANCE....'
Naturally, they are very far away from the top, hence the argument arises. The distance is so great that they can only guess, infer.
'THREE TRAVELLERS, PASSING IN THE DISTANCE, NOTICED HIM AND BEGAN TO ARGUE ABOUT HIM.
Yes, many of you have noticed a Buddha sometime and many of you have noticed a Christ; many of you have come across a Mahavira or Zarathustra -- and you have argued much about them. But there was a great distance. When I say distance I don't mean the physical distance, there may not have been a physical distance at all.
When Buddha came to talk to his father they were standing in front of each other with no distance at all. But there was an infinite distance. Buddha was saying one thing and his father was saying something else. The father was not talking to Buddha at all, he was talking to his son who was no more. He was talking to the past which had disappeared.The son who had left his palace had died, utterly died; this was a new consciousness which had been born, it was a resurrection. But he could not see, he was too clouded -- clouded with the past, clouded with his anger, clouded because this boy had betrayed him in his old age.
Buddha was the only son and he was born in his father's old age. So there was much attachment from the father. Buddha was going to be the heir, he was going to have the whole of his father's kingdom. And his father was really getting old and he was very worried. His son had become a beggar... he was angry, naturally so.
Then the son comes -- and not only does he come, he tries to convince the father that he should do the same, should come and follow him. You can see how angry and annoyed the father must have been. He was shouting and saying that Buddha had betrayed him.
Buddha said, 'Sir, to whom are you talking? The man who used to be your son is no more. Look at me. Who is standing in front of you? I am not that same man. Something has utterly changed. This is somebody else, sir.' And the father laughed and said, 'Do you want to fool me? What are you saying? Have you gone mad? Or do you think me mad?
You are my son, the same son who went away -- I can recognise your face. My blood is flowing in you. I know you, I have known you from your very first day. How can I forget? How can I misunderstand?' And the misunderstanding continued.
And Buddha laughed and said 'Sir, listen to me. Yes, you have given birth to a son and maybe the same blood flows still, but the consciousness is different. I am talking about the consciousness, I am talking about me, I am talking about my centre. It is utterly different. I used to be in dark, now I am in light. And listen to me -- your old age has come, I can see it. You are trembling, you cannot stand properly. Sooner or later death will be coming. Before death comes, meditate. Before death knocks at your door, try to know who you are.'
It continues this way -- the distance is tremendous. So when I say 'distance' I don't mean the physical distance. You have come across a Buddha or a Christ or a Raman or a Ramakrishna -- yes, you have -- and you may have seen them very closely, but still you have been arguing about them. They are standing somewhere far away on a distant mountain and whatsoever you say is irrelevant because it is all guesswork.
THREE TRAVELLERS, PASSING IN THE DISTANCE, NOTICED HIM AND BEGAN TO ARGUE ABOUT HIM.
That's all we do about Buddhas -- we argue, for and against. And all that we say about them is nonsense. Whether you praise or you condemn them makes no difference. All your praise is meaningless, all your condemnation is meaningless -- because you cannot see what has happened to a Buddha. To see that, you will have to become a Buddha.
There is no way to see somebody else's subjectivity a a object; it is not available to the objective mind. It is such all inner phenomenon, it is such interiority, that you cannot see it from the outside. You have to go into it, you have to be it.
They argued and they argued.
ONE SAID, 'HE HAS PROBABLY LOST HIS FAVOURITE ANIMAL.'
That is reason, always thinking of possessions: of the house, of the car, of the animal, of the farm, of the factory, of the money, of the power and prestige. That is reason. reason is a hoarder, reason is a miser. It always thinks of possessing, having.
This is a symbolic story, a metaphor. The first man says, 'HE HAS PROBABLY LOST HIS FAVOURITE ANIMAL' -- THAT'S all that the reason can think about.
If you see a meditator sitting silently and you are a man confined to your reason, what will you think he is doing? You will think that maybe he is planning a new factory or thinking about how to win the election or how to have a bigger bank balance -- that's all you can think about. That's what you think about. If you are sitting silently what will you think about? That's what you will infer about somebody else. There is no other way. You remain confined in your world. Even when you say something about somebody else you are saying it only about yourself.
This man is saying, 'HE HAS PROBABLY LOST HIS FAVOURITE ANIMAL.' If this man had been standing there this would have been the cause -- he had lost his cow and he was standing looking on the top of the hill to try and see where the cow was. Maybe the cow had gone astray. To look for the cow he will go up to the hill -- but for no other reason. Even when he is standing on Everest he will be looking for a lost cow -- even there he will not look for God, remember.
When Edmund Hillary reached the top of Everest he was not looking for God, certainly.
Such a situation, virgin land, nobody had entered there before, he was the first man -- such a virgin quality is difficult to find on the earth any more. He should have meditated there. But what did he do? You know? He planted flags. This is the stupid mind. Coming to such a height, to such altitude, to such a virgin space where nobody had ever entered, where nobody had ever gone with all kinds of mind waves, space which had remained untouched by the mind -- it could have become situation to give you a satori. But Edmund Hillary planted flags and he must have been thinking, 'Now I am the first man, the first man in human history, who has arrived here. Now my record is certain in the book of history. I have made it.' This is an egoistic mind. What else can he think? He must be fantasizing that his name will be all over the world, on the front pages of all the newspapers. He must be seeing that, that's all. Such a situation, such a valuable situation, lost, lost for nothing.
This man says he must be looking for his favourite animal -- he is saying something about himself. If he had been standing there he would have been there only if he had lost his animal. Only then would he go to that height.
Many people come to me and they ask, 'If we meditate will it be beneficial in the world?'
Even if they come to meditate they are asking if it will be beneficial, profitable, in the world. 'I am passing through financial difficulties,' somebody says. 'If I meditate will it help me to come out of it?' Even if you go to the mountain you go with your money- mania.
This is reason, this is head. Head is the most foolish thing in your being because it is concerned with foolish things, with rubbish. Nothing is valuable that passes through your head. It is a junkyard.
ANOTHER SAID, 'NO, HE IS PROBABLY LOOKING FOR HIS FRIEND.'
This is the man of heart; this is the metaphor for the heart. He says, 'No, not for property, he is looking for his friend.' There is a leaning towards the heart, love, friendship, compassion. Maybe a friend is lost. This man is showing something about himself, this is the heart thinking. The heart has more compassion than the head; the head is very hard.
Head is aggression, head is a rapist. And we have been trained to be rapists because we have been trained only in the head -- ambition, ego, aggression. All our educational systems prepare us for rape -- how to rape nature, how to rape others, how to rape everybody, how to be aggressive and how to prove that you are Alexander the Great or Adolf Hitler or some other stupid fellow. All education teaches ambition and ambition is rape -- that's why I say head is a rapist.
The heart has more compassion, has more poetry, is more metaphoric, has a little love, friendship. The second man says, 'NO, HE IS PROBABLY LOOKING FOR HIS FRIEND.' A friend has got lost. The man is saying about himself, 'If I had to go to that hill I would not be going to look for my property, I would only be going to that point, I would only take that much trouble if it had to be done for a friend. Yes, I can do this much of a journey but only for a friend, only for love.'
THE THIRD SAID, 'HE IS UP THERE ONLY IN ORDER TO ENJOY THE FRESH AIR.'
That is sexuality. Sexuality is joy, fun. Try to understand it. You have turned your sexuality also into work. People make love as if it has to be done like a duty. There are mahatmas -- for example, Mahatma Gandhi -- who says make love only when you want to procreate. Now this is the head dominating, trying to dominate sex. So make love only when you want to procreate. It is as if sexuality has no other function, as if sexuality is just like a factory -- when you want to procreate, good, go into it dutifully, fulfill it skilfully, and be finished with it.
For Mahatma Gandhi and people like him making love just for fun is a sin; he calls it sin.
For such people -- and these people are masochists -- for such people anything that smacks of joy is sin. Don't do anything for joy, do it for some purpose. These people are business people. Mahatma Gandhi came from a business family, from a PANIA family; he was a VAISHYA, a business man. And he remained a business man to the very end -- very calculating, very clever.
But everything has to have a purpose, even sex. You cannot love your woman or your man just out of joy, just because the full moon is there in the night, just because the beach is beautiful, just because the sea is roaring so tremendously, just because the rain is falling so beautifully, just because you want to celebrate your energies. No, Gandhi will say no, this will be a sin. Until and unless you have a certain purpose -- to procreate -- don't make love.
But basically the function of sexuality is fun, it is sheer joy. It is playfulness, it is not business, it is not work. It is sheer play, it is playing around. It is being happy with your energy, it is sharing, it is celebration.
So the third says, 'HE IS UP THERE ONLY IN ORDER TO ENJOY THE FRESH AIR.'
That is absolutely foolish for the first. Just to enjoy the fresh air? People like Mahatma Gandhi, even if they go for a walk they don't go just for the joy of it -- they go for health reasons. That is the business mind -- everywhere the business mind. They go for their health.
And remember, this is settling for very, very small things. Don't settle for such a small thing. Health is a by-product. If you go for the fresh air, health will happen; no need to worry about it, no need to make a target of it. You just enjoy the fresh air, enjoy the sun, enjoy the sky, just enjoy walking and running, and health will happen as a by-product.
You don't need to look for it. If you look for it you will miss the whole thing. Then it will be work, you have to do it -- and you will not enjoy it.
Nobody enjoys exercise, remember it. Never do any exercise. Enjoy it, don't do it as all exercise. The very word is dirty. Exercise? Dance, sing, run, swim, but don't do exercise.
Exercise comes from the head, dance comes from the sex centre which is the most primordial sense centre in you. Your very foundation is laid down there. Head is a late- comer. Before head came, heart came; before heart came, sex came.
You were born in sexuality. Your father and mother were making love when you were conceived. Your first move into the world was through sex and your last move out of this world will also be through sex. When the sex energy that your father and mother gave you is finished, you will die. For seven, years you run on it, it is your power. By and by it is dissipated, one day it disappears -- and you die, you disappear again. You will have to wait again for somebody else to make love so you can get into some other womb. It is through love that you come. Love is the door through which we enter existence and love is the door through which we get out. Sex is the first comer; head comes very late. Sex remains our basement; head is like an attic.
THE THIRD SAID, 'HE IS UP THERE ONLY IN ORDER TO ENJOY THE FRESH AIR.'
THE THREE TRAVELLERS COULD NOT AGREE AND CONTINUED TO ARGUE...
They have never agreed, they cannot agree.
... AND CONTINUED TO ARGUE RIGHT UP TO THE MOMENT WHEN THEY ARRIVED AT THE TOP OF THE HILL.
Only at the top of the hill does argument stop, never before -- because only when you start facing reality as it is does the argument stop, otherwise guesswork continues. The longer he distance between reality and you, the more argument, the more philosophising there is. The less the distance, the less the argument is. When you come face to face, when yon encounter, argument stops. When they came to the man who was standing there the argument stopped.
ONE OF THEM ASKED: 'O FRIEND, STANDING ON THIS HILL, HAVE YOU NOT LOST YOUR FAVOURITE ANIMAL?'
'NO, SIR, I HAVE NOT LOST HIM.'
Argumentation has stopped but the habit continues Now they are no longer arguing; there is no point because you can ask directly -- so what is the point of arguing? If you can see directly what is the point of arguing and guessing any longer?
But still the old habit continues. Rather than asking him what he is doing, the first man asks, 'O FRIEND, STANDING ON THIS HILL, HAVE YOU NOT LOST YOUR FAVOURITE ANIMAL?' The old habit persists to the very end. Even when there is no point, when you can ask directly what he is doing, the mind will not come directly to reality -- it goes in indirect ways, through old habits. It has its own forms and formalities The man is still trying to prove that he is right. Remember, even when you are facing God you will still be trying -- 'My Christianity is right, my Hinduism is right, my Islam is right.' You will ask God also, 'Are you not, sir, really a Christian God ' You will be still carrying your Gospel and you will try to get God to say, 'Yes, I am the God of the Gospel.' And the Hindu will ask, 'Sir, now I am standing before you, is it not right that it is you who wrote the Vedas, that you are the true God of the Hindus?' And so on and so forth...
ONE OF THEM ASKED: 'O FRIEND, STANDING ON THIS HILL, HAVE YOU NOT LOST YOUR FAVOURITE ANIMAL?'
'NO, SIR, I HAVE NOT LOST HIM.'
When you don't ask a direct question naturally you get a negative answer -- remember this. Zen people insist very much on being direct. If you ask directly you receive a positive experience; if you ask indirectly, naturally you receive a negative answer, an answer that is relevant. You have not asked, 'What are you doing?' you are asking, 'Are you looking for an animal?' and naturally the man says, 'No, Sir.'
Never ask reality any indirect question and never ask reality with any prejudice otherwise you will receive a 'no'. Ask directly. Drop your mind, drop all your prejudices, presuppositions, philosophies and ask directly. That's what Zen means by 'looking directly into the nature of things.'
THE OTHER ASKED, 'HAVE YOU NOT LOST YOUR FRIEND?'
'NO, SIR, I HAVE NOT LOST MY FRIEND EITHER.'
The second has not learned from the first -- who had received a negative answer. We are so foolish we don't learn. We go on persisting in our habits. Now this second man should have learned not to ask an indirect question but he again asked one. The Christian has failed, then comes the Hindu, and he will fail, and the Mohammedan, and he will fail, and the Jaina, and he will fail. And they will go on repeating the same mistake.
'NO, SIR, I HAVE NOT LOST MY FRIEND EITHER.'
THE THIRD TRAVELLER ASKED, 'ARE YOU NOT HERE IN ORDER TO ENJOY FRESH AIR?'
The third, rather than learning from the first two, must be hoping that now there is more possibility for him to be true -- naturally, logically. Now that the two have been answered no, he must be coming closer. What other possibilities are there? There are only three possibilities: reason has failed, emotion has failed, now there is only one possibility -- that sex will succeed. The path of knowledge has failed, the path of devotion has failed, now there is only one path left -- tantra. Tantra will succeed.
The third man must be very hopeful. He is almost confirmed -- what else can this man say? He has to concede. But you never know reality. Reality is so vast it is never confined to any path, it is never confined to any statement about it. Reality is so total that no single part of you can claim it. The third man has not learned that two parts which were even cleverer have failed. The reason, which is the cleverest of these three and which has been thinking and thinking for centuries and creating great philosophy, has failed. And the heart, which is higher than sex, closer to the head than sex, just in- between the two, has failed.
And, of course, when you are in-between the two you are more understanding because you are in the middle, in the golden mean. You can look at both sides, you are not an extremist. You can see the head and you can see the sex because you are just in the middle. The head cannot see the sex at all, the heart is again standing in-between. But the heart can see both ways so there is more possibility for the heart to be wiser than the head. The head is more knowledgeable, the heart is wiser -- but even the wiser fellow has failed. And sex, which has no intelligence, which has no possibility to be wise, to be as wise as the heart.... But sometimes it happens that where angels are afraid to tread, fools just go in headlong.
THE THIRD TRAVELLER ASKED, 'ARE YOU NOT HERE IN ORDER TO ENJOY THE FRESH AIR?'
'WHAT THEN ARE YOU DOING HERE, SINCE YOU ANSWER NO TO ALL OUR QUESTIONS?'
They must have all asked together. This should have been the first thing but it comes at the last.
THE MAN ON THE HILL REPLIED, 'I AM JUST STANDING.'
'I am just being. I am not doing anything whatsoever.' The man simply said, 'I am the centre of that triangle.'
Just standing. This is what meditation is. Not doing anything at all -- neither thinking, nor feeling, nor being sexual; neither in the body, nor in the heart, nor in the head -- not confined anywhere, just standing in the centre of the triangle.
The triangle is the trinity, the three faces of God, and in the centre is a God himself. God is not doing anything, God is just being. To be is to be in meditation. And when you have arrived at this centre all three travellers by and by start asking the direct question .
The story ends here because the story really ends here -- it cannot go any further. Those three must have fallen silent. They had not conceived of this possibility at all. This is the fourth possibility -- Hindus call it the TURIYA, the fourth -- which cannot be conceived of by either reason or by heart or by sex, it cannot be conceived of at all. It can be lived but it cannot be conceived of. There is no way to see it from any angle. When all angles are dropped, when you are absolutely nude, without any prejudice, without any clothing, when you are absolutely silent, then you see.
Listening to this 'I am just standing' all three centres must have fallen silent. They had not even dreamed about this. No animal, no friend, no joy of the fresh air, nothing of the sort -- this must have been a shock. When you arrive in your meditative world for the first time, all your centres are shocked into silence. The reason falls quiet, words no longer move; the heart falls quiet, feelings no longer cloud you; sex falls quiet, no more sexuality arises. Seeing the truth all becomes silent.
This statement 'I am just standing' is the definition of meditation. Once you have come to this point you have become a harmony within. This is the first step, the yoga part of it, the Gurdjieff part of it, the effort part of it, the will part of it. Then the next thing happens of its own accord, you need not do anything. The next thing is a happening, the first thing is a doing.
You have to travel far enough to come to the hill and to stand there above all the darkness of the valley, above all the paths, above all the viewpoints, religions, philosophies; you have to stand above all of them. This is a hard task, arduous. Once you have arrived there and you are just standing, God happens. In the right moment, when your standing, has become absolutely unwavering, suddenly you are penetrated by God. You disappear, God disappears; and there is oneness.
That oneness is samadhi -- and that is the difference between satori and samadhi. Satori is getting in harmony within yourself, that is the first step; samadhi is getting in harmony with the total, that is the last step. In satori your conflict disappears; in SAMADHI you also disappear.
Attain to this joy that comes with a non-conflict inside you and attain to this bliss that comes by falling in tune with the universal pulse when you dance with the stars and you grow with the trees and you flower with the plants and you sing with the birds and you roar with the sea and you are in the sand and you are everywhere, spread all over, you are everywhere and now here -- this is the only goal.
And this goal has a beauty... the beauty is that it is a non-exploitative joy. If you want to have more money you will be exploiting others. You cannot have more money without making somebody poorer somewhere. If you want to have more political power you will be snatching it away from somebody else.
All joys except meditation are exploitative. Even if you are in love with a beautiful woman it is exploitative because that beautiful woman will not be available to anybody else any more. You have possessed her, you have drawn a boundary line and now she belongs to you. Now if somebody starts feeling love for her he will suffer because she is already engaged.
Except meditation all joys are exploitative; only meditation is a non-exploitative joy, only meditation is a non-competitive joy. You don't take anything from anybody, you simply grow into it yourself. Enlightenment is not something that happens from the outside, it is something that sprouts in you, that blooms in you. It is a growth, it is not an achievement.
That's why enlightenment cannot be all ego trip. Meditation is a non-ego trip. What is meditation? Meditation is to be in harmony within and without. Meditation is to be in harmony. Meditation is to be the harmony.
Zen: The Path of Paradox, Vol 1