FROM BONDAGE TO FREEDOM
The psychology of the buddhas
FROM BONDAGE TO FREEDOM
The psychology of the buddhas
PLEASE EXPLAIN THE PSYCHOLOGY OF THE BUDDHAS.
Man can be understood as a seven-story building: three stories are underground, three stories are above ground. One story, the middle one, is half underground and half above ground. This fourth story is where we are. Sigmund Freud calls it conscious mind.
When Freud started working with sick people, he became aware that there is something underneath the conscious mind. He called it the unconscious mind. He stopped there. He thought he had discovered something new -- and in a way he was right, because he was not aware of the Eastern psychology that has existed for thousands of years which has taken note of all the states of the mind. So it was a re-discovery.
Sigmund Freud's closest colleague, and the most talented psychologist, was Carl Gustav Jung. He worked even harder, went deeper into the psyche of man, and found another story underneath the unconscious. He called it the collective unconscious mind. He stopped there. It is enough for one man to discover even one story, because it is such a vast phenomenon. And, after Jung, nobody has gone deeper than that.
But in the East, below the collective unconscious mind, we have discovered the last story -- the cosmic unconscious mind. In the East these minds are simply mentioned, no details are given. The reason is clear... because the search in the East and in the West differed fundamentally. The Western psychologists were concerned with sick people, insane people; naturally, they have to go below the conscious mind to the unconscious. But if there was somebody who was even more insane, they had to go to the collective unconscious. But it is very rare to find a man who is so mad that he has reached the cosmic unconscious mind. If somebody goes that mad, he will be almost a rock. That's why they have not been able to discover the cosmic unconscious mind.
But, in the East, the search was totally different. They started looking into the minds of meditators, not madmen. As they worked, they found that above the conscious mind there is a superconscious mind. And many religions have stopped there, thinking they have arrived -- it is so beautiful, so peaceful.
But a few seekers continued to fly higher and higher, and found another story on top of the superconscious mind: the collective superconscious mind. Most of the seekers stopped there; the joy is too much, uncontainable. It is unbelievable that there can be anything more. But only a few have gone to the very end, to the highest peak -- and they have found the cosmic conscious mind. The cosmic conscious mind is what I call the state of enlightenment, the state of buddhahood.
The West has not even started working upwards. It has not even finished the downward journey. And it is not just accidental that more psychologists, psychotherapists, psychiatrists go mad than any other profession. It looks strange: these people should be the sanest people -- but you don't see the complexity.
With their patients they are going deeper into darkness -- and going with the patients, they are becoming vulnerable themselves. Seeing the patient has fallen from his conscious mind into the unconscious, they become aware of their own unconscious. Seeing the patient who has fallen into the collective unconscious, they become aware of their own collective unconscious. And it is like standing on the verge of an abysmal depth. Just a single wrong step and you will be drowned in darkness.
More psychologists commit suicide than any other profession: the proportion is almost double. More psychologists are sexually perverted than in any other profession. One should have thought just the opposite -- that the people who know psychology, the workings of the mind, would be more natural, healthier, saner. But that is not the case, and the reason is that Western psychology has never looked upwards. It has never worked with meditators. It has never raised its eyes towards the sky; it is focused towards deeper and deeper, darker and darker spaces. They have not been studying healthy people.
In fact, why should somebody who is healthy go to a psychoanalyst? -- and particularly somebody who has attained to superconsciousness. He will have a far vaster vision than any psychologist. He has nothing to learn from them; he can teach them many things of which they are absolutely unaware. The man who has reached to the collective superconsciousness has become almost superhuman.
But in the West, in the first place it was difficult to find such people. Secondly, where such people existed, the Western psychologists were afraid to go; their very existence disturbed their petty theories. They want to be very systematic -- and then suddenly they come across a man who has a superconscious mind. He disturbs their whole system. His functioning is different, his behavior is different, his actions are different.
He looks at the same things with a different eye. He listens to the same words, but with a deeper and profounder meaning. He lives the same ordinary life, but with such a joy, with such a radiance, that it is unbelievable. He has nothing to be so blissful about, but it cannot be denied that he is blissful.
The man of the higher stage -- the collective superconscious -- will be a giant. Sigmund Freud, Carl Gustav Jung, Alfred Adler, Assagioli, will look like pygmies before him. And nobody wants to look like a pygmy. It is said, in the East, that camels don't like mountains. Without the mountains around they are greatly content with their height, but by the side of a mountain the camel simply finds that he is nothing.
Western psychology has been avoiding facing the reality of the higher states of mind. I call these people cowards. They are trying to look busy in mental asylums, or sitting by the side of the couch and listening to the dreams of some stupid guy -- mostly Americans, because you have to tell your dream and you have to pay too; otherwise, who is going to listen to your stupid dream?
The psychologist is paid -- it is the most highly paid profession today -- for a strange thing: that he listens. Whether he listens or not you don't know. He just sits behind the couch so you cannot even see him, whether he is dozing, thinking, "When is this guy going to finish?"
I have heard that one psychologist was very famous; each single minute you had to pay for. And a rich man, a very rich man, became his patient; of course, poor people cannot afford psychology -- thank God!
The rich man was able to pay whatever the psychologist wanted, but he had a condition: he was not to be interrupted. When he started telling his dreams then you had to listen, whatsoever the charge; money did not matter. And he went on and on. He was driving the psychologist nuts!
Finally, the psychologist said, "It takes too much time, and I have to see other patients also. So I will do one thing: I will put on my tape recorder so whatever you say will be recorded. And in the night, when I have time, I can listen to it."
The rich man said, "That's a perfectly good arrangement."
Next day, when the psychologist was coming in the office, he saw the rich man leaving the office -- and the office had just opened. He said, "So soon? Are you finished with the story?"
He said, "No, but I thought, if you are saving your time, why should I waste mine? So in the night when I had time I recorded it. So my tape recorder is telling the story, your tape recorder is listening to it. Your time is saved, my time is saved."
Western psychology is in very bad shape. And the reason is, to study higher states of consciousness nobody is going to pay you; on the contrary, they may ask you to pay! The lower states, where a person becomes insane, are paying -- and when something like psychology becomes a business, it is dangerous. There should be a few things which should not be business. Now, it is the business aspect of psychology that is preventing it from studying higher states.
At the level of superconscious mind, all thoughts, all feelings disappear; you start living in an absolute silence. But this silence is a little bit empty. It is beautiful; just to be silent, utterly silent, has a beauty of its own. But when you reach to the collective superconscious you become aware that silence can remain and yet it can become full; it need not be empty. It can become full of joy, it can become full of love, it can become full of creativity.
But there is still one higher stage: the cosmic superconsciousness, where your individuality disappears like a dewdrop falling into the ocean. Suddenly you become the whole ocean. At the stage of cosmic superconsciousness you start experiencing the ultimate truth of life, the meaning of existence, your unity with the whole.
Things are no longer outside you, you are no longer outside of things: all divisions have disappeared. In some strange way the sunrise is within you, and the stars are within you, and the flowers are within you. You have become spread over the whole cosmos.
There is tremendous liveliness. Birds are singing, peacocks dancing. The whole existence is your home. Only one thing you cannot find: your tiny ego. That is lost somewhere on the way. You are, and you are for the first time, but you are not an ego, you are just pure isness.
The psychology of the awakened ones covers the whole range -- all the seven stories. The lower three stories are not bothered about. Years of psychoanalysis is sheer wastage. In the psychology of the awakened ones, anybody who has fallen below the conscious is simply taught a simple method of meditation, which brings him back to normal consciousness without any analysis, without going through years of all kinds of torture.
And the same method -- once you know it has brought you from the unconscious to the conscious, you have a master key in your hands, because the method to pass from one story into another is the same. The same method of witnessing takes you away from conscious mind to superconscious mind. Don't stop. There will be great temptation to stop, because you have not seen such serenity, such tranquility -- you may think perhaps the end has come. No. Until you feel oneness with the whole existence, go on. The same method will take you step by step to the final and ultimate stage of being.
Western psychology is only for sick people. Eastern psychology is for healthy people. My effort is to bring them together -- because healthy or sick, they are the same people. And if a method is available which can take you from one stage to another higher than it, then why stop anywhere? Just being normal is nothing. There are higher treasures waiting for you, greater experiences ready to be yours. The ultimate home has no doors: you can simply enter it.
Western psychology has no method through which the patient himself can become independent from the psychologist. He becomes dependent. In fact, it becomes something of prestige; people ask each other, "Who is your psychoanalyst?" If you cannot say some great name, that means you are missing something.
And the psychoanalyst, after years of analysis, reaches nowhere, helps you to reach nowhere. You can change the psychoanalyst -- and that's what people go on doing. It becomes an addiction. Two sessions per week -- if they don't have them, then they start feeling uneasy. It is a kind of catharsis. Just speaking your mind without any inhibition, without any taboos, helps you to unburden.
But within two to three days you accumulate again the same burden, because the psychoanalysis, as it is practiced, is not destroying your inhibitions, it is simply giving you temporary relief. At the most you may become a normal human being. That means you may reach to the fourth stage, in which the whole of humanity is living. That is not much of a gain.
And you have not been given any insight into how to go on growing. You have not even been told that there is anything above the normal conscious mind. In fact, even the psychoanalysts don't know that there is something above it -- and they are not interested, for the simple reason that the person who goes above is not a patient. He has no dreams to analyze, he is not sick anymore. He is for the first time healthy, and getting more and more healthy. At the seventh stage he will be whole.
To me, that's what "holy" should mean -- not being a saint according to a certain doctrine, not being an ascetic, not following Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism.
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The real holiness is the fragrance of becoming whole, becoming one with the whole.
But because psychoanalysis has become a business in the West... and it was meant to become a business. It was created by a Jew, and it is mostly dominated by the Jews; it is a Jewish profession. And whatever the Jews do will become a business. Christianity became a business -- that was the working of a Jewish carpenter, Jesus Christ. It is big business. Sigmund Freud has created another big business.
What I am saying and doing is to destroy it as a business. It is something more valuable. It is something that should not be categorized as a profession, as a business: it is human growth, and we should look for higher states.
Perhaps the people who have fallen lower than the normal, if they had known that there were higher stages, may have fallen higher. Why choose the lower when you know...?
There is a story, a Sufi story. It must be a story, it cannot be true, but it has some truth in it. A Sufi mystic, who was known to be a little bit eccentric, a little crazy, was staying in a disciple's house. And they thought, "This man is known to do things which create unnecessary nuisance, and he enjoys it. So let him sleep in the basement, and we will lock the door so in the night at least he cannot do anything."
Suddenly in the middle of the night they heard great laughter coming from the roof. They rushed up, and they saw the saint rolling on the roof and laughing a belly laughter. He could not stop even to tell them what had happened.
The host asked, "What has happened?"
He said, "Strange things happen to me -- I started falling upwards! You put me in the basement, and in the night I started falling upwards -- I am here on the roof! That's why I am laughing, because this is not the normal way of falling, and you will think that I am being a nuisance."
The story may be a story, but such stories are told to say something which cannot be said otherwise.
The people who have fallen below the normal mind, if they had known that there is a door upwards, may have chosen to fall upwards. For example, all great artists, painters, poets, dancers, musicians, sculptors -- most of them have been, sometime or other, inmates in a mad asylum. And these were the most intelligent people you can find on the earth.
I can clearly see that a person like Vincent van Gogh, if he had known.... (THERE IS THE LOUD ROAR OF A MILITARY JET PASSING OVERHEAD.) Don't be worried: somebody has fallen down, has lost his normal consciousness. Otherwise, the whole sky is available, there was no need to come so low -- but it happened at the right moment!
Vincent van Gogh, if he had known that there is some door upwards -- I cannot conceive that he would have fallen downwards. (THE JET RETURNS.) He is back again! But still don't be afraid. He is falling, but he will not fall too much, because there are only three stories down and he seems to be on the third already. (THE JET RETURNS AGAIN.) He is giving proof!
My work here is to bring the Eastern discoveries of higher consciousness to the West and create the psychology of the buddhas, so that there is no need for anyone to fall down. Just make the passage going upwards available to every person.
Most of the great painters and other artists have committed suicide because they could not prevent themselves from falling again and again back into madness, and it seemed that only death could become their deliverance. This is shameful, this is ugly! In the East, in the whole of history, not a single artist has been mad, not a single artist has committed suicide. And they have created far greater art, far deeper music, far more magical dances. The West cannot compare.
But what happened? Why did these people not become mad, not commit suicide? The reason was, the higher realms were available. And they had the intelligence: they were not satisfied with the normal consciousness, they had to move away from the normal consciousness. If there is no way to go up, they were ready to go down, but they wanted to move away from normal consciousness.
But once they are made aware that higher possibilities exist, I don't think anybody is going to choose lower realms.
It is something of tremendous importance to understand that Western history is not more than two thousand years old. The East is at least ten thousand years old. And yet in ten thousand years not a single case of madness or suicide amongst such intelligent creators who made the Taj Mahal, who made the temples of Khajuraho, who made the caves of Ajanta and Ellora, the temples of Konarak -- there exists nothing comparable to them anywhere in the world.
In China, there is a temple known as the Temple of Ten Thousand Buddhas, because the temple has ten thousand statues of Buddha. It is almost the whole mountain, carved. It must have taken centuries, and thousands of sculptors, craftsmen, designers to create a temple out of the mountain -- and with ten thousand beautiful statues of Buddha. Just sitting inside it you will feel that you are uplifted. The whole atmosphere is vibrant. Not a single artist has fallen into the depths and darkness, as has been happening in the West to almost every artist.
This situation can be changed. But the psychology should be transformed. It should not be oriented to the insane people; its orientation should come from the awakened ones.
Meditation is simply a method to go beyond your normal mind. And anyone who meditates cannot fall below the normal mind. That is an impossibility. And anyone who meditates is sooner or later going to reach his real home -- which is not only his, which is our home.
SHAKESPEARE SAID, "THERE WAS NEVER A PHILOSOPHER WHO COULD ENDURE THE TOOTHACHE." WHAT IS THE MYSTIC'S ATTITUDE TOWARDS PHYSICAL PAIN?
Shakespeare is right. There has never been a philosopher who could bear a toothache, because philosophy has nothing to do with toothache, headache, stomachache. Philosophy is just intellectual gymnastics, it has nothing to do with reality. It talks, argues, creates magnificent systems of thought, but it does not change the man who is creating all this. He remains the same man.
For example, I remember that Immanuel Kant, one of the great philosophers of Germany, became very sick. The doctors were at a loss, because there was no reason for his sickness. They could not find anything wrong with his body.
Then one of the friends who had been out of town came back. He looked around and he said, "Don't be worried, I know what is the cause."
The doctors said, "We have been searching for the cause and we don't know it. You are not a doctor -- how do you know the cause?"
He said, "I know Immanuel Kant. The window in the room is the place where he used to stand every morning to see the sunrise. The neighboring house has been sold to a new owner and they have planted tall trees just close to the window. And Immanuel Kant is a man who functions just like clockwork -- moment to moment, things have to be exactly the same. These trees are the cause of his sickness."
The friend went to the neighbor and told him. He said, "If this is the cause, anybody could have come and told me. Immanuel Kant is so precious a man -- we will cut down the trees immediately."
The trees were removed, and the next day Immanuel Kant was perfectly healthy -- not even a toothache. But because he cannot see the sunrise from his window.... He could have seen it from somewhere else, but that was not his way. He had very fixed habits.
At ten o'clock in the night he would go to bed. Everybody knew about it. Once in a while somebody who was not aware of the fact would be simply shocked, because Immanuel Kant, seeing the clock striking the hour of ten, would simply jump into his bed and cover himself with his blanket. He would not even say good night, and the man was sitting there!
His servant would come and say, "The master has gone to sleep. He goes exactly according to the clock, so he cannot waste a single moment even in saying good night. Now you have to go -- you can come tomorrow, or whenever you like. But don't feel offended, he does not mean any offense to anybody."
He was habituated to getting up early in the morning, at five o'clock. He loved the early morning fresh air, the crispness of it, and the silence of the road. But to get up at five was a difficulty. The servant was told that he had to wake him at five, whatsoever happens. Kant would fight, he might hit the servant. The servant was allowed to hit him, drag him out of the bed, push him into the bathroom. You could do everything, but if you allowed him to sleep, your service was finished.
And this was a daily ritual: the servant beating the master, the master beating the servant. He was hiding under the blanket, and the servant was pulling him out and forcing him into the bathroom; he was coming out again and again, and trying to get into the bed.
Immanuel Kant would say at that time, "What are you doing? You are my servant, and I am saying that I want to sleep!"
But he had warned him, "I will say such things! You are not to listen to ANYthing. I may say that I am feeling sick, I don't want to get up. Don't listen to any argument, any excuse: your work is to put me in the bathroom, so that at exactly five I am on the road."
He was a man of tremendous intelligence and he created a great philosophical system; but as far as his attitude, his approach towards life is concerned, he behaved very childishly -- not even in a mature way. It seems his philosophical intelligence had become overgrown, and everything else had remained retarded.
You ask me, "What will be the mystic's attitude?"
I will tell you an incident -- it happened in this century.... In 1920, the maharaja of Varanasi in India had to go through an operation for appendicitis, but he refused to take any anesthesia, any chloroform, anything that could make him unconscious.
He said, "I have been working my whole life to expand my consciousness. Just for this small operation I am not going to take anything that goes against my consciousness; I don't want to fall into unconsciousness."
He told his doctors, "Don't be worried" -- and the doctors had been called from England, the best surgeons. But they were concerned because it was a major operation, and to do it without giving any anesthesia was unheard of.
But there was no way. The maharaja was adamant, and he said, "I tell you that there is no problem. I will simply close my eyes and go into my meditation. Then what happens to my body, I am simply a witness of it."
It was not understandable for the surgeons, but to wait was also dangerous; the operation had to be done as quickly as possible. So finally they had to agree.
The maharaja closed his eyes, relaxed his body, and the operation was done. It took two hours. The doctors could not believe their own eyes, that the man was there, fully conscious, yet there was no sign of pain on his face.
When the operation was over he opened his eyes, and he said, "I loved it. It was a great experience to witness my body being operated on, and just to stand there aloof, far away -- as if something is happening to somebody else."
That's the mystic's attitude. Anything that happens to his body is not happening to him; he is simply a witness. Even if death comes, he is simply a witness.
Socrates was dying -- he had been given poison. He was a great mystic. His disciples were surrounding him, and he went on saying to them, "My legs have become numb." And he laughed, he said, "But I am just the same! My legs are gone, but I am not reduced. My hands have become numb, but I am the same. My consciousness is not reduced; on the contrary, it is more clear than it has ever been. Soon my heart may stop. Soon I may not be able to talk to you, but remember, only the body is dying, I am not."
This is the mystic's attitude, and this is the only healthy attitude. Every human being should attain to it.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SPIRITUALITY AND RELIGIOUSNESS? PLEASE EXPLAIN.
Spirituality is something which accepts the duality between matter and spirit. It is against materialism, it is a word that creates schizophrenic people.
Religiousness is something far more beautiful. The word "religiousness" comes from religio. It means putting things together. Spirituality means splitting things into matter and spirit, Zorba and Buddha, body and soul. That has been the way of all the religions up to now. But it is basically wrong, because existence is not dual; it is oneness, it is one organic whole.
The word "religiousness" simply means that you are feeling a togetherness with body, with mind, with soul; there is no division. In this unity blossoms religiousness. Religiousness is far higher than spirituality. Spirituality can take you into the lower states of consciousness. Religiousness can take you into the higher states of consciousness.
Do not divide. All divisions are false. And anything that divides, drop it. Anything that unites, cherish it, nourish it, rejoice in it.
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Sure -- but only when you ask such stupid questions!
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